Man loses leg after being struck by van

Kamloops Mounties are looking for information from witnesses to a collision between a minivan and a man walking outside a downtown grocery store that cost the pedestrian his leg.

RCMP Cpl. Wayne Chung said emergency crews were called to the Cooper's Foods store on Lansdowne Street at about 2:20 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 2, after a vehicle struck a pedestrian.

The driver of the van, described by police as a 68-year-old woman, told investigators she was attempting to park when she confused the accelerator and the brake, causing the vehicle to lurch onto the sidewalk and pin the pedestrian against a concrete pillar.

Chung said the pedestrian, a 53-year-old man, sustained a severed lower leg in the collision.

The collision is the latest in a string of recent incidents involving older drivers and pedestrians —including an identical incident in the same parking lot last month.

On Nov. 22, a 25 year-old Kamloops man was taken to hospital with injuries  after a 72-year-old man drove his car over the curb and onto the sidewalk in front of London Drugs, pinning the pedestrian to the ground.

On Nov. 21, a 66-year-old woman was struck and killed while crossing Victoria Street at Sixth Avenue. Police have since said the 62-year-old driver of the truck alleged to have hit her was prohibited from driving at the time.

Two female pedestrians suffered life-threatening injuries in separate crashes in September and November, each involving male drivers in their 80s.

And, in the summer of 2011, four incidents involving elderly drivers — two smashed storefronts and two pedestrians hit — made local headlines.

Police have so far ruled out drugs, alcohol and medical issues as contributing factors to Sunday's crash, and the woman's van has been seized for a full mechanical inspection.

Anyone who witnessed the incident is asked to call police at 250-828-3000 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.


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