Firefighters not at fault for pickup damaged getting out of the way: courts

A Langley resident sued for $5,000 after scraping her pickup

A Langley woman has lost a $5,000 lawsuit against the Township of Langley after she damaged her vehicle trying to get out of the way of a fire truck.

The woman told a Small Claims Civil Resolution Tribunal that a Township fire truck had “bullied” her through an intersection and damaged her pickup.

On July 24, 2017, the woman was driving her white Ford F350 pickup on 264th Street, and had stopped for a red light at an intersection.

The flashing lights of a fire truck appeared in her rear view mirror, and the woman said she pulled over to the right to allow the truck to pass her.

“According to the applicant, the fire truck was very close to her vehicle,” the tribunal’s Lynn Scrivener wrote in her judgment. “The applicant says the fire truck was creeping forward, which led her to assume there was not enough room for it to pass.”

So the pickup driver kept moving, saying she had “no choice” but to create space for the fire truck.

She felt a bump on the passenger side of her truck, where a sand-filled barrel and concrete barrier stood. After that, she decided the only way to get out of the fire truck’s way was to go through the intersection.

The incident left her with damage to the pickup’s passenger-side fender, running board, and door including scrapes, dents, and scratches.

She claimed $5,000 in damages for repairs.

The fire captain and driver of the pickup, however, didn’t remember the incident exactly the same way.

They were heading north responding to an emergency call. They waited until traffic in the southbound lane was clear before using that lane to get to the red light, where the driver stopped to make sure he could cross the intersection safely.

While they were waiting, the white pickup “sped north across the road,” according to the firefighters’ written testimony.

The fire truck then drove through the intersection, having confirmed there was no oncoming traffic.

The pickup driver admitted there was no contact between the fire truck and her Ford, Scrivener noted.

“There is no indication that the respondent’s employees [the firefighters] somehow directed the applicant to move her vehicle,” Scrivener wrote.

While she may have felt pressure to get out of the way, there’s no evidence the fire truck forced her to drive into the barriers, Scrivener found.

The claim for $5,000 was dismissed.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Historic Oliver Museum renovated to better serve community

The 96-year-old building previously faced challenges with heating, cooling and wood degradation

City of Penticton developing plan to improve access to child care

Parents, guardians, care providers asked to provide input

Former Summerlander receives Emmy nomination for makeup work

Lucky Bromhead recognized for her work with Canadian sitcom Schitt’s Creek

Mural adds artistic flair to downtown Keremeos

A new, privately commissioned mural has received praise from residents

Morning Start: High heels were first designed for men

Your morning start for Monday, Aug. 10, 2020

B.C. records 30-50 new COVID-19 cases a day over weekend, no new deaths

Many of those testing positive were identified by contact tracing for being linked to other confirmed infections

Five B.C. First Nations call out Canada for ‘discriminatory’ food fish practices

West Coast nations say government ignoring court-won right to chinook and coho

No new COVID-19 cases in Kelowna over the weekend

Kelowna has nine of the Interior Health region’s 13 active cases

Rent-relief program becomes new front in fight between Liberals, opposition

Opposition trying to draw parallels between decision to have Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. run program and the WE controversy

West Kelowna woman upset with RCMP response to street brawl

A physical altercation between a group of teens and a group of adults erupted on a West Kelowna street Sunday evening

Kelowna real estate agent fined $6,500 for ‘misleading’ website

The website listed several services its owner was not licensed to provide

Ottawa sets minimum unemployment rate at 13.1% for EI calculation

Statistics Canada says the unemployment rate was 10.9 per cent in July

$45K in donations received after couple’s sudden death in Tulameen

Sarah MacDermid, 31, and Casey Bussiere, 37, died August long weekend

Most Read