Ontario's Police Watchdog Investigating Fatal 417 Crash

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A horrific scene along Highway 417 near Arnrprior on Sunday.

Two people were killed and two others seriously injured in a multi-vehicle collision.

It started when Ottawa Police and the OPP were pursuing a 36 year old man along Highway 17, who would not stop his vehicle.

Police say the pursuit was called off for safety reasons, and the man then drove the wrong way on Highway 417.

"He was going eastbound in the westbound lanes", OPP Const. Guy Prevost told CTV News.

The man's vehicle collided with several other vehicles shortly afterward.

The 36 year old man died, along with a 62 year old woman who was driving one of the other vehicles involved.

Dean Brown, an announcer for TSN 1200, was in his vehicle on that stretch of highway at the time, and ended up in the ditch with some minor injuries.

"All of a sudden we looked up, and there was a car coming right at us", Brown told CTV News.

"People died today.  It was ugly, it was scary, and you can't unsee that.  There was a gentleman trapped in his car, and you could see the pain he was in", Brown added.

No names have been released, nor has the reason that police were following the man in the first place. 

SIU Investigation Underway

Ontario’s police watchdog, the Special Investigations Unit, is now handling the investigation.

"Three investigators, two forensic investigators and one collision reconstructionist have been assigned to this incident", said a news release from the SIU.

"The SIU is urging anyone who may have information regarding this incident to contact the lead investigator at 1-800-787-8529. The Unit is also urging anyone who may have any video evidence related to this incident to upload that video through the SIU website", it added.

The SIU is an arm’s length agency that investigates reports involving police where there has been death, serious injury or allegations of sexual assault.

Highway 417 was closed in both directions for several hours during the investigation, but was reopened early Monday morning.

(with files from CTV Ottawa and the Canadian Press)