Mounties say a suspect armed with an assault rifle was shot and killed Wednesday night after opening fire on police in Surrey, B.C.

Insp. Steve Wade said the suspect was pulled over at around 11 p.m. for a routine traffic stop when officers noticed a firearm in his vehicle.

The driver sped away, spurring a short police chase. The vehicle, a white Chrysler 300, was eventually halted by a spike belt near King George Blvd. and Highway 10 and its door pinned shut by an RCMP cruiser.

In Pictures: Police shootout

Wade says the driver then opened fire on police. "Our members took cover and returned fire," he said. "Luckily, they weren't hurt. They're fairly shaken up, like anyone would be, but they handled it very well."

However, later in the day, the RCMP said they couldn't confirm whether there was "an exchange of gunfire" between the officer and suspect.

The suspect was fatally wounded and died at the scene. Another weapon, a handgun, was found within arms reach in his vehicle.

The deceased has not been identified, but Wade said he is an adult male.

The Saanich Police has been brought in to take conduct of the investigation.