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Family of motorcyclist who died in crash south of Whitehorse files lawsuit

Travis Adams was one of two people killed in the July 2020 collision.
An RCMP places evidence markers after a fatal motor vehicle accidental involving a motorcycle near the blue bridge south of Whitehorse on July 8, 2020. (File Photo)

The common-law wife of a man who died in a July 2020 motorcycle collision near Whitehorse is suing the owners and drivers of the other two vehicles involved in the incident.

A statement of claim was filed with the Yukon Supreme Court by Jennifer DeHart on June 9. It alleges the actions of the owners and drivers of two cars resulted in the wrongful death of Travis Adams, who was riding his motorcycle at the time he was killed. The suit is filed on her own behalf and on behalf of their three children.

Adams was 43 at the time of his death.

The collision in question took place on July 5, 2020, south of Whitehorse along the Alaska Highway, in the vicinity of the highway bridge near the Lewes Dam. The lawsuit alleges that while Adams was riding his motorcycle north on the highway, two vehicles, an Oldsmobile and a Chevrolet, approached heading south.

The lawsuit alleges that the Oldsmobile crossed the centre line into the northbound lane in an effort to overtake the Chevrolet. It claims the two cars collided and lost control before the Oldsmobile struck Adams’ motorcycle leading to fatal injuries.

Nicole Sanderson, a 47-year-old woman from Winnipeg who was riding in the back seat of the Oldsmobile was also killed in the crash.

The suit names Devin Edmiston of Winnipeg, Justice Field of Whitehorse and Kevin Mendelsohn of Vernon, British Columbia, as well as Sanderson’s estate, as defendants. It claims that Edmiston was behind the wheel of the Oldsmobile owned by Sanderson and Field was driving the Chevrolet owned by Mendelsohn at the time of the crash.

“One or more of the occupants of the Oldsmobile and Chevrolet were known to each other,” the lawsuit reads.

The lawsuit alleges the drivers of both vehicles were negligent and therefore responsible for Adams’ wrongful death. It also claims the owners of both vehicles are vicariously liable for the result of the crash.

“The defendants, jointly and severally owed a duty of care to the plaintiffs and breached that duty causing or contributing to the wrongful death of Travis Adams and the losses to the plaintiffs,” the statement of claim reads.

Those losses are also described in the statement of claim. DeHart and the children are said to have suffered grief and a loss of guidance, care and companionship. They also lost financial support and inheritance.

The allegations have not been tested in court and as of June 22, the defendants have not filed statements of defence.

Contact Jim Elliot at

Jim Elliot

About the Author: Jim Elliot

I’m a B.C. transplant here in Whitehorse at The News telling stories about the Yukon's people, environment, and culture.
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