ABBOTSFORD, B.C. — The RCMP Air 1 helicopter was called into action over the weekend as a stolen semi-truck led police on a pursuit through B.C.’s Lower Mainland.
The white 2003 Peterbilt was reported stolen from Abbotsford, B.C. and spotted a few hours later by Langley RCMP driving erratically without a trailer.
After a short pursuit, the driver of the stolen rig tried to ram the police cruiser and the Air 1 helicopter took up the pursuit from the air.
Air 1 is B.C.’s first dedicated, fully equipped traffic safety helicopter. Its arrival to the Lower Mainland was first announced back in February and is a result of a partnership among the BC Government, RCMP and police departments in the Lower Mainland, and the Insurance Corporation of BC (ICBC).
After arriving on the scene the multi-purpose light single engine helicopter, tracked the stolen tractor for more than an hour as it ran through stoplights and drove into oncoming traffic.
Police laid a spike belt on the road, which initially made little impact as the driver continued on his course with a punctured left tire. After flames and sparks slowed the rig down, the driver was unsuccessful in attempting to carjack a motorist he had run off the road.
Eventually the truck came to a halt in a cloud of smoke after colliding with a concrete divider on the Fraser Highway, and a police canine unit was able to capture the suspect.
— with files from the Vancouver Province
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