According to the RCMP, 15 of the 29 people on board a Humboldt Broncos bus are dead after a collision with a semi-truck on Highway 35 Friday night.
The RCMP have not identified any of the deceased.
The bus and the semi collided at about 5 p.m. near the intersection of Highways 35 and 335, just north of Tisdale. The Broncos were on the way to a playoff game against the Nipawin Hawks. The game was cancelled.
At about 12:30 a.m. Saturday, the RCMP confirmed 14 of the 29 people on board the bus had died, while the other 15 were sent to hospital, three with critical injuries.**
The RCMP said they are working to ensure families are notified as soon as possible and appropriate supports are put in place.
Some families took to social media to share news of their loved ones. The sister of head coach Darcy Haugan indicated he was among those lost.
According to the Canadian Press, the father of Broncos captain Logan Schatz confirmed the 20-year-old was also killed. He played for the team for four years, and was captain for two and a half years.
Montmartre native and Prince Albert Raiders prospect Adam Herold was also killed. He was just six days shy of his 17th birthday. Herold was the captain of the Regina Pat Canadians of the Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League this past season. He was called up to the Broncos at the end of the Midget league season for Humboldt’s playoff run. He appeared in three games for the Raiders this season.
Police officers remained on scene the following morning as the investigation into the crash continued.
A GoFundMe page set up shortly after the crash to support families of victims and survivors raised over $500,000 in less than 24 hours. Its original goal was set at $10,000, but has since been increased to $800,000.
Donations came in large and small, including contributions from the Vancouver Giants WHL team, the NHL Officials Association, Crescent Point, the Calgary Flames and Calgary Hitmen, Bauer Hockey, the Mosaic Company, NHL forward Tyler Bozak and a donor by the name of Stuart Mittlestead who contributed over $24,000.
Saturday morning the City of Saskatoon announced it was sending members of its Critical Incident Stress Management Team, a group of mental health responders, to work with first responders from Tisdale, Zenon Park and Nipawin who helped with the crash and subsequent rescue efforts. Officials from both Saskatoon and Prince Albert indicated flags would be lowered to half staff.
The Humboldt fire department lowered that city’s flags Saturday morning. A small memorial of flowers and cards was created on Humboldt’s hockey arena’s front steps.
Condolences poured in from across North America, including several NHL teams, players, broadcasters and politicians including Premier Scott Moe, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
** The RCMP originally reported 14 were injured and 28 were on the bus. That number was updated by the RCMP Saturday morning.