Truck using block of wood as passenger seat taken off the road in Burnaby
A truck was taken off the road in Burnaby after Mounties discovered a wooden block was being used as a passenger seat. (Handout/ Burnaby RCMP)
VANCOUVER -- A truck that had been using a block of wood as a passenger seat was taken out of service and towed by Mounties on Wednesday.
Burnaby RCMP's traffic section and the Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement team had been conducting safety checks at a stop on North Fraser Way near Marine Way when they noticed the passenger in the truck coming towards them was seated much lower than the driver.
"When they pulled the truck over, they noticed the passenger was actually sitting on a wooden block," said Cpl. Michael Kalanj. "There's no passenger seat. There were too many people in the vehicle to be driven safely."
Mounties said the driver and owner of the truck were issued three violation tickets, which totaled $1,108.
"It's unsafe to not have a seatbelt. On top of that, he or she was sitting on a block of wood that could move even if they just turned abruptly," said Kalanj. "Much like having an insecure cargo in the back, we have a passenger sitting on a block of wood in the front seat, not secure at all, who could fall backwards, sideways, up, down. Heaven forbid there's an accident. Not safe at all."
Mounties are conducting four days of commercial vehicle safety enforcement in Burnaby, which started on Tuesday and will run until Friday. Kalanj said on the first day of the blitz, 52 per cent of vehicles that were stopped were deemed unsafe and taken off the road.
"Taking a vehicle off the road in Burnaby keeps the Lower Mainland safe and, in some instances, keeps the continent safe because a lot of these trucks are going in between municipalities but they're also going province to province. They're crossing the border."
The BC Transportation Ministry said in a tweet that the incident reminded them of a similar case from 2017 where a bus was taken off the road for having unsecured items inside, including a wood stove and lawn chairs. The chairs had been rigged with seat belts, according to the ministry.