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Investigation continues into traffic accident

Waterloo Regional Police continue to investigate a fatal collision that occurred July 17 in Wellesley Township.

Nineteen-year-old Irene Kuepfer of Millbank died after being struck by a cube van on Chalmers-Forrest Road, near William Hastings Line. She was airlifted to London Health Sciences, but later succumbed to her injuries.
The accident occurred about 1:15 p.m. when Kuepfer was struck by a cube van as she was riding southbound on what was described as a homemade scooter.

Emergency crews work to stablilize a 19-year-old  Millbank woman struck by a cube van on Chalmers-Forrest Road in Wellesley Township. Transported by air ambulance to London, Irene Kuepfer later succumbed to her injuries.
Emergency crews work to stablilize a 19-year-old Millbank woman struck by a cube van on Chalmers-Forrest Road in Wellesley Township. Transported by air ambulance to London, Irene Kuepfer later succumbed to her injuries.

The driver of the vehicle, a 60-year-old Millbank man, was also southbound at the time.

Charges are pending, although police did not release any further details this week. They have not yet determined the cause of the collision.

Because the tragedy occurred in a “rather isolated area,” police are hoping that anyone who may have seen either one of the vehicles prior to the incident will come forward.

“Any information relating to the incident right now would be helpful,” said WRPS spokesperson Olaf Heinzel.

“Anything around that time period, we would certainly appreciate a call.”

This was the second fatal collision on Wellesley and Woolwich roads in close succession; 16-year-old Dani Tillich of Maryhill died July 16 from serious head injuries sustained in a collision July 8 while crossing Sawmill Road near Parkside Drive in St. Jacobs.

Police are appealing to drivers and pedestrians to exercise caution when travelling area roads.

“It’s a very tragic event, obviously, for our community. We ask for anyone who may have information to call us. We would like to reiterate and send a message to all road users of the importance of making safety the top priority: awareness of other vehicles and other road users is the top priority, and we’d like to finish our summer up with as few incidents as possible,” said Heinzel.

“We’ve had a number of incidents in our region in these past few weeks and probably too many already where people have either been seriously injured or died. Our appeal is to the general public to slow down, make safety their top priority and give driving their full attention.”

The investigation is continuing and anyone who may have witnessed this collision is asked to contact the Waterloo Regional Police traffic services branch at (519) 650-8500, ext. 8856 or by e-mail at traffic@wrps.on.ca.

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