1 teen killed, 5 hurt in rollover near Sharbot Lake

OPP investigate collision north of Sharbot Lake, Ontario, May 5, 2024 (OPP/X - image credit)
OPP investigate collision north of Sharbot Lake, Ontario, May 5, 2024 (OPP/X - image credit)
OPP investigate collision north of Sharbot Lake, Ontario, May 5, 2024
OPP investigate collision north of Sharbot Lake, Ontario, May 5, 2024

Ontario Provincial Police officers investigate a fatal rollover north of Sharbot Lake on Thursday. One teenager was killed and five others from the same high school were taken to hospital. (OPP/X)

The Granite Ridge Education Centre in Sharbot Lake, Ont., says all six occupants of a vehicle that rolled over Thursday afternoon were students there.

The collision happened Thursday just after noon on Burke Settlement Road, according to Const. Rob Martell of the Frontenac OPP.

OPP said Friday the occupants of the vehicle ranged in age from 15 to 17. The teen who died was a passenger, police said, and two other passengers were seriously injured.

There were four females and two males in the vehicle at the time of the crash, OPP said.

The investigation continues, but police said Friday the victims were in an SUV that left the road, rolled into a ditch and hit a tree.

Crash on school lunch break

On Friday, the Limestone District School Board forwarded to CBC an email from Granite Ridge's principal, who said the crash happened during the school's lunch break.

The boy who died "was a cherished member of our school community, and his loss is felt deeply by all who knew him. Our thoughts are with his family and friends. As an entire school community, we offer our deepest sympathy at this time," wrote Carrie Moore.

Both the school and the board are making staff available for support, Moore said, adding the school can help connect people who are looking for support with the proper resources.

Patty Gollogly, the associate superintendent of safe schools for the Limestone District School Board, told CBC that student support workers and counsellors will remain available in "the coming days, [which] are going to be extremely difficult."

"For people who are so young, to go through and to experience this type of tragedy, [it's] important that they're able to talk about it," she said.

The crash scene is north of Sharbot Lake in the Township of Central Frontenac, about 70 kilometres north of Kingston and 105 kilometres southwest of Ottawa.

"The kids were all just devastated yesterday," said Central Frontenac Mayor Frances Smith, whose grandson goes to the school. "It's a small school. Everybody knows everybody."

She said it comes at an especially difficult time of year because some of the students would have been preparing for graduation.

Former paramedic James Hickey, who lives along Burke Settlement Road, was one of the first people to arrive at the scene after the crash.

Hickey said he was just getting out of his truck when he heard "what sounded like a bomb go off."

'I helped out as much as I could'

"I heard a young lady scream," Hickey said. "As she was coming up the yard, I [could see] that she was bleeding."

After calling 911, Hickey said he went down to the scene to help one young man who was having trouble breathing.

When he reached the boy who died, Hickey said he felt for a pulse and listened to his chest.

"[I was] just watching if there was any movement. There wasn't," he said.

He says emergency crews arrived shortly after that.

"I helped out as much as I could," Hickey said.