UPDATE (10:00 AM)
According to a media release from the Orillia OPP, the preliminary investigation reveals that a lone male driver was travelling southbound in the northbound lane and collided with a vehicle, travelling northbound; that vehicle was driven by a female with two young children as passengers. The female driver was airlifted to a Toronto area hospital by Air Ornge with life-threatening injuries. Her two children were brought to Orillia Soldiers' Memorial Hospital with minor injuries and later discharged. The other driver was transported to an Orillia area hospital with serious injuries.
An off-duty doctor, nurse, and paramedic along with several concerned citizens were on scene tending to the injured parties and assisting Severn Township firefighters and County of Simcoe paramedics.
One person was airlifted to a Toronto hospital and three people were taken to Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital Wednesday night after a serious crash on Highway 11 just north of Orillia.
OPP say a person was driving the wrong way in the northbound lanes of Highway 11, between Soules Road and Menoke Beach Road, and crashed head-on into an oncoming vehicle. A third vehicle was also involved in the horrific crash.
“With a divided highway like we have there, you certainly wouldn’t expect to see a person driving at highway speed toward you like that,” said OPP Sgt. Peter Leon. “The vehicle was pretty mangled and there were certainly serious, serious injuries. One person had to be extricated.”
Leon said police are unsure why or how the driver managed to enter the highway and drive in the wrong direction. “It’s not easy to do,” said Leon. “It has certainly left us scratching our heads. Sadly, it's not the first time that it's happened. Right now, we don’t really know what happened.”
He said the OPP Central Region technical investigators were on the scene for several hours investigating. The highway was closed from just after 7 p.m., when the crash occurred, to just after 1 a.m. “It’s a pretty extended period of time given it is such a busy stretch of highway,” said Leon.
To help police piece together what happened, they are appealing for witnesses to come forward. “If someone saw the vehicle, saw where it came on to the highway, that would help our investigators,” said Leon. He urges witnesses who observed the vehicle or the collision to call OPP at 1-888-310-1122.