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Toddler dies after being struck by recycling truck in Barrie, Ont. neighbourhood

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A toddler has died after being struck by a recycling truck in a Barrie, Ont. neighbourhood on Thursday afternoon.

Police said the call about a collision involving a 23-month-old boy on Red Maple Lane in the city's south end came in shortly before 12:45 p.m.

The child suffered life-threatening injuries and was airlifted to a trauma centre, where police said he passed away during the night.

"We have a lot of unanswered questions at this time," stated Peter Leon, communications coordinator with Barrie Police Services.

Police have obtained surveillance video and canvassed the area for witnesses to help investigators piece together exactly what happened.

"This is truly a tragic incident that our community has to live through," Leon said.

Police say the driver remained at the scene, and those who know him said he is an experienced driver.

The incident happened in a new subdivision under construction near Mapleview Drive East and Yonge Street.

"We have to acknowledge the fact that a life has been lost, and that is something that is irreversible," Leon concluded.

Parents taking their children to school Friday morning were shocked to hear about the tragedy.

"I've got my daughter playing outside here every day, running around or riding her bike, or whatnot. It makes me feel, I don't know how to explain it," said parent Mario Hamilton.

"[Keep a] close eye on your kids at all times. That's why every time they want to come outside and play, I'm right here with them," said neighbour Justin Mullin.

In a statement to CTV News, the recycling company Emterra Group, wrote, "We are deeply saddened by the tragic incident that occurred on May 23, 2024, involving one of our company trucks.

Our hearts and deepest sympathies are with the family. We are fully cooperating with the ongoing investigation."

Recycling collection was transitioned from the City of Barrie on May 1 to Circular Materials, which then contracted Emterra Group.

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