Witnesses to the collision tried to pull Atwal out of the truck, which was fully engulfed in flames, but were unable to save him.
The B.C. Coroners Service has yet to confirm the identity of the driver. But Shimmy Walia of Mid-Valley Sand and Gravel in Surrey, B.C. told CBC News that he owned the truck in the fire and that Atwal was the driver.
Walia also said Atwall was in his 30s, was from Abbotsford, B.C. and had several children.
Loud bangs, flying tires
The accident happened around 9 a.m. PT on Wednesday near the overpass for Highway 17A, also known as the Ladner Trunk overpass.
Witnesses reported explosions after the southbound dump truck hit the highway median and burst into flames.
"We tried to get out there to do what we could to help him, but it was too late. There was loud bangs, tires were flying. It was time to step back," said witness Gary Edgar on Wednesday.
"We were yelling at him. We were pretty confident he was unconscious throughout all this, but there was no way to get him out."
Two vehicles in the northbound lanes were also damaged after being hit. The drivers of both vehicles were transported to hospital with non-life threatening injuries. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
Google Maps: Highways 99 and 17A