08/29/2013 10:14 EDT | Updated 10/29/2013 05:12 EDT

Highway 97 Crash North Of Quesnel Leaves Car, Truck In Flames


QUESNEL, B.C. - A fiery crash north of Quesnel, B.C. has claimed two lives, RCMP confirmed Thursday.

The crash happened Wednesday afternoon, when a car crossed the centre lane of Highway 97 and collided head on with a truck that was carrying two trailers of wood chips.

Cpl. Madonna Saunderson said both vehicles burst into flames, and the fire spread to surrounding trees, prompting crews from the forestry ministry to rush in and battle the blaze.

Saunderson said two people who were in the car died, but the driver and lone occupant of the chip truck was uninjured.

The collision shut down the highway for several hours, but it was re-opened Thursday morning.

Saunderson said the investigation is still in its early stages, but it does not appear that factors such as alcohol was involved in the crash.

"We've interviewed witnesses that were following both the truck and the car, and they all pretty much say the same story that for no reasonable explanation, the car just moved over into the northbound lane," she said. "We don't know why."

Saunderson said police have identified one of the victims, but no names will be released until next of kin has been notified.

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