According to investigators, a York Regional Police officer was driving along Major Mackenzie Drive East, near Kennedy Road, when a Hyundai Veloster drove past her.
The officer followed the vehicle, the SIU said.
Around 7:20 p.m., the Veloster was involved in a collision with a Toyota Corolla near Ninth Line and Elgin Mills Road East. The 68-year-old driver of the Corolla was pronounced dead at the scene.
“When officers arrived they determined that two vehicles were involved in the collision, one male was sadly deceased at the scene,” said Const. Laura Nicolle in a video posted to the York Regional Police’s official YouTube page.
The driver of the Hyundai wasn't seriously hurt.
The SIU is asking anyone who may have information about the incident to contact investigators at 1-800-787-8529.
It also wants anyone who may have any video evidence related to this incident to upload it through the SIU website.
MADD Canada urges drivers to plan ahead
Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Canada’s Carolyn Swinson said she supports victims of impaired crashes and knows the pain of losing loved ones in collisions first hand.
She said learning about the Markham crash made her think of the victim’s family.
“I just feel sick,’ she said in an interview with CTV News Toronto on New Year’s Day.
Swinson said she lost her father in an alcohol related collision and, in 1993, her son died in another crash. He was just 27 years old.
“One of the reasons families really have difficulty dealing with it, they know it's something that didn’t have to happen. Somebody being selfish and making a bad decision,’ Swinson said.
She stressed the importance of drivers making a plan if they are impaired.
“You need to know how you're going to get home safely before you even set foot out the door because when you're out there you've been drinking. It's too late to be making that decision, and as we can see it can have tragic consequences," she said.
Swinson urges people to plan ahead: Leave the car, take transit or get a designated driver.