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Hydro crew frees couple from vehicle

A BC Hydro employee cuts the wires off a power pole that had trapped a couple in their late model Chevrolet on the Island Highway this afternoon around 3:30 p.m. - Alistair Taylor/The Mirror
A BC Hydro employee cuts the wires off a power pole that had trapped a couple in their late model Chevrolet on the Island Highway this afternoon around 3:30 p.m.
— image credit: Alistair Taylor/The Mirror

A couple waited in their truck while BC Hydro crews were called to free them after they collided with a power pole on the Old Island Highway Monday afternoon.

Hydro workers disconnected the power cables that landed on top of the vehicle after the pole was sheared off by the bumper of a late model Chevrolet near Jubilee Parkway south of Campbell River around 3:30 p.m.

The driver and her passenger appeared unhurt but had to stay in the vehicle as a precaution until the power to the lines had been disconnected. Hydro crews were on the scene within 15-20 minutes and had the couple free shortly thereafter.

North and southbound traffic on the Island Highway had to be diverted around the approximately two-kilometre stretch of Highway 19A near Crawford Road. Meanwhile, northbound vehicles south of the Oyster River were diverted up Hamm Road.

According to BC Hydro, if you are in an accident involving downed power lines touching your vehicle:

If you’re inside your vehicle:

  • If you can safely drive out from under the power line or away form the source of electricity, do so. Travel at least the length of a bus away before stopping.
  • If you can’t drive the vehicle – if you’r injured, the vehicle is inoperable or where there are obstacles – stay where you are until help arrives. Unless there’s a secondary emergency – the vehicle is on fire, for example – you’re safer where you are.
  • If you absolutely must get out, don’t touch the vehicle and the ground at the same time with any part of your body or clothing.

Then carefully:

  • With the door open prepare to jump. Stand up, elbows tucked into your stomach and your hands held close to your chest.
  • Jump out and away from the vehicle, landing with your feet together and touching. Don’t stumble.
  • Calmly shuffle with your feet together, always touching, for a bus length away (10 metres).
  • Call 911.
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