A man narrowly escaped death Friday afternoon after his pick-up truck careened off a Coquitlam highway, clipped a power pole, smashed through a guardrail fence and launched off a 60-foot embankment.
In its descent, the truck spun 180 degrees, caught its undercarriage on a retaining wall and came to a rest at the edge of a shopping complex's rooftop parkade ramp at 329 North Road.
“It was pretty dramatic,” said Coquitlam Fire and Rescue Assistant Chief of Operations Chris Fox after responding to a call at 1:46 p.m.
“Witnesses were saying ‘it launched.’”
After firefighters from Coquitlam and Burnaby arrived on the scene, the man was pulled from the vehicle and later taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The single driver of the vehicle was confused and didn’t know what happened but did not appear to be seriously injured.
“The crews helped open the doors and he was able to walk under his own power to the ambulance,” said Fox.
According to Fox, the front end of the vehicle “looked like a porcupine” after plowing through several metal poles.
The crash, which took place near the corner of Lougheed Highway and North Road, snarled eastbound traffic after several Coquitlam RCMP units shut down both lanes in that direction
By 3:45 p.m., one lane of traffic was still closed as BC Hydro crews assessed the stability of the sheared power pole and Workers Compensation Board representatives investigated the scene (the truck appears to be a work vehicle for a glass installer company).
While there’s no word on what caused the accident, one thing is for certain, said Fox, “That guy had a pretty lucky day.”