WATCH: The family of an 87-year-old woman who was killed Friday during a routine transfer when her ambulance was hit by a train, is frustrated they’re not being told anything
A Metro Vancouver family is looking for answers after 87-year-old Helena Van Gool died in a collision between an ambulance and a train in Langley.
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Van Gool was a patient and was being driven from her seniors’ residence to hospital when the crash happened Friday morning.
The death came as a shock to her family, who describe her as a smart woman and an avid reader. Van Gool, who family and friends called Leni, was being transported to hospital for a routine procedure to treat her diabetes when the collision occurred.
“Hearing about it, it was a shock,” said sister-in-law Carla Van Gool. “Our whole family was in shock hearing that. She was still basically healthy.”
“She was a real loving and caring person. She did things for other people.”
The ambulance transporting Van Gool was almost over the tracks when it was struck on its rear end by a northbound CN freight train travelling on CP tracks. The vehicle spun around and was struck again on the front end.
Van Gool was flown to Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster and died later in the day.
The RCMP said on Saturday the ambulance driver had been released from hospital and a paramedic who was riding in the back of the vehicle was in stable condition.
Mounties said they were reviewing video captured by several dashboard cameras, as well as possible video from the train.
Additional investigations are underway by the coroner, WorksSafeBC, the Transportation Safety Board, the BC Ambulance Service and CP Rail.
-With files from Canadian Press