Green lights all the way for runaway truck
An out-of-control heavy-duty tow truck blazed through Vanderhoof with malfunctioning brakes on Highway 16 on Jan. 26 at 3:15 p.m.
“It’s a miracle that nothing happened; so easy for somebody to be killed in that situation,” said Sgt. Svend Nielsen.
Pulling a semi-truck front unit, the westbound vehicle was first spotted by a RCMP member, who was stationed at the highway’s intersection with Recreation Avenue.
Tracked through a static radar gun, the vehicle’s speed increased from 87 to 96 kilometres per hour within the 50-km/h speed limit zone, as it rolled through the intersection with a green light.
It continued with increasing speed through another green light, passing by Tim Hortons. As it approached the highway’s intersection with Burrard Avenue, surrounding vehicles, including a westbound logging truck, were able to stay out of the way.
“Luckily, all traffic was in the east-west direction,” Nielsen said.
The vehicle finally rolled to a stop by Kal Tire, as the driver was able to apply his front-disc brakes.
He had previously tried to fix the vehicle’s mechanical issue on his own, and accidentally pinched its brake line and interrupted the airflow.
The incident incurred no damage nor injuries, and the vehicle has been taken off the road for inspection.
New social program for the less fortunate
Vanderhoof’s local RCMP detachment is starting a new program to target the district’s chronic offenders — such as those who are homeless or have drinking problems, Nielsen said.
Involving the local government and organizations, the program will allow the RCMP to help with the district’s social issues by providing ways for individuals to “get their life together,” he said.
“If you can help one person, it impacts a huge number of files in the community,” Nielsen explained, adding that police resources can then be allocated to other operations.
The program is currently at its beginning stages, with more information to come.
– with files from Sgt. Svend Nielsen, Vanderhoof RCMP