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Police remain tight-lipped one year after crash killed municipal worker near Victoria

Steve Seekins is pictured. (District of Oak Bay) Steve Seekins is pictured. (District of Oak Bay)
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One year after an allegedly reckless driver careened into a municipal park east of Victoria, killing a 52-year-old husband and father of two young children, there are few answers about what led to the crash and no criminal charges have been forwarded to prosecutors.

Oak Bay municipal worker Steve Seekins was killed instantly when the black SUV struck him while he and a work crew were inspecting a storm sewer next to Bowker Creek on Monterey Avenue, across the street from the Oak Bay fire and police headquarters, on May 17, 2023.

Witnesses told CTV News they saw the vehicle speeding down the typically quiet Monterey Avenue that Wednesday morning, weaving into oncoming traffic and narrowly missing a child on a bicycle just moments before the fatal collision.

Oak Bay police Chief Mark Fischer said at the time that investigators had "evidence of erratic driving," confirming the SUV was "travelling at a high rate of speed" before the crash. The vehicle "crossed both lanes of traffic and struck Mr. Seekins from behind, causing him to go airborne," Fisher said.

The SUV continued through the park before buckling around a large tree. The driver was taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. 

Investigators, with assistance from the Saanich Police Department, canvassed the area for witnesses and surveillance video taken in the moments before the collision.

Ongoing consultations with prosecutors

One year later, the police chief says the department continues to investigate the crash and "remains committed to ensuring that all possible facets of inquiry leading up to the collision have been comprehensively addressed."

The Saanich Police Department's major crimes unit has been leading the investigation. The department referred all questions about their work to the Oak Bay police.

The driver has not been named publicly.

The vehicle eventually struck a tree in the park, next to Bowker Creek. (CTV News)

In an emailed statement, Fisher said investigators "have remained in contact with Steven's family, have engaged with representatives from ICBC, WorkSafeBC and the legal team representing the subject driver, and remain in consultation with Crown counsel."

Seekins's wife did not respond to a request for comment on the matter.

The police chief said investigators will be able to provide an update on the case once consultations with Crown prosecutors is complete.

Mother also killed in car crash

Years before taking the job in Oak Bay, Seekins worked for an oilfield services company in Grande Prairie, Alta.

In a YouTube video published in 2014, Seekins described how the work schedule allowed him to spend more time with his wife and young son, prior to the birth of their daughter.

"I made a commitment to myself a long time ago that I wasn't going to miss my son's childhood," he says.

Seekins grew up in Alberta and his life was altered early on by an automobile crash in which his mother was killed and he was severely injured, according to an obituary published by the Bear Creek Funeral Home.

Steve Seekins is pictured with his wife. (District of Oak Bay)

In the summer of 2022, Seekins accepted a job with Mitchell Excavating in Victoria and then joined Oak Bay's public works department, working regular weekday shifts for the first time in his adult life, the obituary says.

WorkSafeBC launched its own investigation into the fatal crash. As of Friday, the agency says the inquiry is still ongoing with no estimated timeline for its final report.

"The amount of time an investigation takes is directly related to its complexity," WorkSafeBC spokesperson Ashley Gregerson said in an email.

The District of Oak Bay told CTV News in an emailed statement that the death of their colleague "still weighs heavily" on the staff and the wider community.

"Our loss cannot compare to the loss of the Seekins family, who are in our thoughts daily," district spokesperson Hayley Goodgrove said. "The District of Oak Bay remains committed to supporting staff who have been impacted by this tragedy."

  

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