Crime

Surrey, B.C., man critical after Blaine crash Friday night; 2 from Ferndale treated

El Nuevo Herald

A Surrey, British Columbia, man was in critical condition at St. Joseph hospital at about 1 p.m. Tuesday after a crash with a semi-truck Friday night, said hospital spokeswoman Bev Mayhew.

Christian G. Villegas, 40, was taken to the hospital after the crash at the intersection of State Route 543 toward Boblett Street. Another driver, James B. Vandekamp, 34, of Ferndale, was taken to St. Joseph, along with one of his passengers, David Colacurcio, 15, also from Ferndale, the Washington State Patrol said. Both have been treated and released, said Mayhew and Hilary Andrade, another hospital spokeswoman.

According to a state patrol report, Manjinder Singh, 32, of Surrey, was driving a 2016 Volvo semi-truck southbound on SR 543 toward Boblett around 6:40 p.m. Friday. Pombra Ankur, 35, also from Surrey, was in the passenger seat.

Vandekamp was driving a 2008 Chevrolet Tahoe with four passengers and was stopped at a red light, facing south on SR 543 at the Boblett intersection, the report says. Villegas, who was driving a 2003 Toyota Tacoma, was also stopped at the light.

Singh failed to stop as he approached the light and struck the back of Villegas’ truck, which then struck Vandekamp’s SUV, the state patrol said.

When crews arrived, the vehicles were facing different directions and were so damaged that it was difficult to tell how the crash happened, Chief William Pernett with North Whatcom Fire and Rescue said Friday night.

“I couldn’t tell who hit who or what direction or anything,” he said about an hour after responding to the crash.

Singh was not injured, nor was Ankur, according to the state patrol. Vandekamp’s three other passengers, Shannon Vandekamp, 32, Jamason Vandekamp, 3, and Olivia Vandekamp (the report listed her as younger than 1) all from Ferndale, were not injured.

Everyone besides Ankur was wearing seat belts, the state patrol said.

The crash remains under investigation, but the state patrol said there was no indication that drugs or alcohol were involved.

Villegas’ condition was corrected Jan. 17, 2017. The Washington State Patrol inaccurately reported Villegas’ condition by phone Friday night and in a press memo Saturday morning, which was reflected in an earlier version of this story.

Kyle Mittan: 360-756-2803, @KyleMittan

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