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RCMP reviewing dash-cam footage in Diamond Rally crash

Sept. 5 accident sent several people to hospital
S2S hwy  accident Sept 5 from RCMP 73819_IMG_1530
RCMP investigators are reviewing dash-cam footage of a multi-vehicle crash on Sept. 5. Photo courtesy of Sea to Sky RCMP

RCMP has confirmed investigators are reviewing dash-camera footage of a multi-vehicle crash involving a Lamborghini that was part of the Hublot Diamond Rally on Saturday, Sept. 5.  

While the accident—which took place on the Sea to Sky Highway near Daisy Lake—is still under investigation with no additional updates from police, Craig Stowe, organizer of the charity supercar event, claimed both the footage and eyewitness accounts show that it was a car not associated with the rally that allegedly caused the crash. Multiple people, including two children, were sent to hospital as a result of the accident. 

“Early news reports were not completely accurate,” claimed Stowe in response to questions sent in an email by Pique. “As organizers of the Diamond Rally Charity Challenge we are cooperating with the RCMP Whistler in their investigation. The RCMP [has] the original dash camera footage and the eyewitness statement.” 

The day after the crash, RCMP told media a black Range Rover and a silver Lamborghini were travelling northbound where they were involved in an incident that caused the Lamborghini to lose control, strike the median, cross over into oncoming traffic, and hit a Toyota crossover travelling southbound. 

Officers at the time said they were investigating both the driver of the Range Rover and the Lamborghini for dangerous operation of a motor vehicle.

“…Once all details are obtained, including the [Integrated Collision Analysis Reconstructionist Service] analysis, we will have a clearer picture of fault,” Sgt. Sascha Banks said in a release at the time. 

In the wake of that news, many took to social media to criticize the event. Stowe believes this stems from inaccurate reports. 

“Negative public backlash has come from those that have reacted to social media and mainstream media that inaccurately reported that the Lamborghini, driving with the flow of traffic and a registered car in the Diamond Rally Charity Challenge, caused the accident,” he added. 

Aside from the 2020 event, the Diamond Rally has seen drivers ticketed for speeding in the past. In 2017, police impounded two vehicles that were part of the rally and fined the drivers $493 for “grossly exceeding” the speed limit. 

“All registered drivers sign an agreement to follow the rules of the road according to the Motor Vehicle Act,” Stowe said by email. “As all drivers know, speed limits must be followed and adhered to at all times on public roads and highways.” 

The event, which is a charity fundraising platform that aims to inspire drivers to raise funds and awareness for a charity of their choice, has been running for eight years, usually on the first Saturday in May. However, due to the pandemic, it was moved to the September long weekend. 

“This year, it was originally scheduled for May 2,” Stowe wrote. “However, due to COVID, the hotels and restaurants in Whistler were closed. We had discussions with the hotels and restaurants on where they needed the economic support for room nights and dining reservations. They responded that outside of July and August, they needed support for room bookings and restaurant reservations.” 

There is no timeline for when police might lay charges or release more information on their investigation, said Banks. In the meantime, Stowe said they will review the event and safety policies like they do every year. 

“We are saddened to know there were injuries that happened on that weekend and understand that those involved are recovering,” Stowe wrote. “The Diamond Rally Charity Challenge brings together people from all ages, varying walks of life, cultural and social-economic backgrounds to support charitable fundraising automotive events. Many charitable organizations and individuals benefit from the money raised from these collaborative fundraising events.”