Driver Charged In Death Of Canadian Woman Hit By Cargo Van
TORONTO, (IANS) – A 25-year-old driver has been charged in connection with the death of a Canadian Sikh woman who was struck by an unoccupied cargo van while she was walking her children home from school in 2020 in British Columbia province.
Paramjit Kaur Masutta, 48, died on December 15, 2020, when the van rolled into traffic near 144 Street and 61A Avenue and struck a vehicle before mounting the sidewalk, hitting the victim, CBC News channel reported.
Jeo Kurian has been charged with dangerous operation of a motor vehicle causing death, according to Surrey RCMP.
“This was a tragic and devastating loss for the victim’s family, and has also impacted many people within our community,” RCMP sergeant Tom Boyce said in a news release.
On March 7 last year, Masutta’s husband, Daljit Singh, filed a lawsuit in the Supreme Court of BC against Kurian, Amazon and two logistics companies — Foss National Leasing and Damy Logistics — alleging their negligence led to her death.
Damy provides delivery services for Amazon in the Lower Mainland, and Foss owned and leased the truck to Kurian, according to the claim.
The lawsuit claimed that the cargo van was parked illegally, facing the wrong direction on 144 Street, with the handbrake off. Kurian was out of the vehicle making a delivery when the unoccupied van rolled down 144 Street, hit a southbound vehicle and “crossed over to the northbound lane, and then rolled onto the sidewalk” on the east side of the street, the lawsuit read. Masutta was walking home from school with her daughters when she saw the van rolling down the street. She pushed her daughters out of the way to save them but was unable to save herself from being struck by the vehicle.
The lawsuit alleged that the collision and death “were caused by or contributed to by the negligence” of Kurian, including failing to take the proper or reasonable steps to avoid a collision; failing to park the van in a way that would have prevented it from rolling down the hill and parking illegally and without using an emergency brake.
A response to the claim filed on behalf of Kurian and all the companies named as defendants denied any negligence. Kurian is scheduled to make his first appearance in court on October 31.