MELFORT, SK – Truck driver Normand Lavoie, 41, will serve three years in prison for the deaths of three Saskatchewan teenagers, and the injury of a fourth person.
The Winnipeg driver pled guilty May 30 to three counts of dangerous driving causing death, and one count of dangerous driving causing bodily harm, in the May 3,2015 accident near Spalding, SK.
Lavoie, who was hauling foam insulation panels, hit the car carrying the three teenagers from Carrot River, SK while they were stopped in a construction zone. Carter Stevenson, 17, Kristian Skalicky, 15, and Justin Gaja, 14, were driving home from football camp when they died.
Sam Fetherston, a flag person from British Columbia, was also severely injured when the force of the collision pushed another car into him.
In the Melfort Court of Queen’s Bench, Sept. 11, Lavoie received a sentence of three years for each of the three boys killed, as well as one year for injuring Fetherston, all to be served concurrently. He will also face a prohibition on driving for five years after he is released.
The sentence falls short of the Crown’s request for six years in prison, with a nine-year driving ban.
In an agreed statement of facts Lavoie said he wasn’t asleep at the wheel, but wasn’t paying attention as he entered the construction zone traveling at 84 kilometers per hour.
Lavoie was not over the prescribed Hours of Service, and said he was not tired, but was diagnosed with mild sleep apnea after the incident. Lavoie did say he couldn’t remember entering the construction zone, or even seeing signs for the area.
Lavoie was taken to jail immediately following sentencing.