Black Press Media file photo of N19 bus

Black Press Media file photo of N19 bus

Bus stolen in Surrey overnight after driver took a bathroom break

A 28-year-old man is facing auto theft charges

A 28-year-old man is facing auto theft charges after an N19 NightBus was stolen from the Surrey Central bus loop early Thursday morning.

The suspect’s name has not yet been released. Sergeant Clint Hampton, a spokesman with the Metro Vancouver Transit Police, said the theft happened at about 2 a.m after the proper driver left the bus parked at the loop.

“The bus was left running, he went in to use the washroom, came back out and the bus was gone. He contacted police right away,” Hampton said, adding GPS was used to locate the bus.

“I believe at that time it was around 160th and Fraser Highway. With the assistance of the Surrey RCMP, the bus was pulled over at 176th and Fraser Highway, and the suspect, who is a 28-year-old man, was arrested. Whether or not there’s mental health issues here, that’s of course part of the investigation. Charges have been forwarded for theft of a motor vehicle over $5,000.”

No damage was done to the bus. “There were no other passengers on the bus and nobody else was injured.”

Hampton told the Now-Leader that this is the first time he’s heard of a bus being stolen in this region.

“At least in my time working in media, I’ve never dealt with anything like this,” he said. “I don’t have details on any other incidents like this. If there ever has been, it would be an extremely rare circumstance. I’ve been working on our media side of things for a couple of years now; it’s most certainly something that I’ve never reported on, so it’s not something that we deal with.”

READ ALSO: Surrey teen survives 500-foot fall while climbing mountain in Oregon

READ ALSO: One to hospital following New Year’s Day assault in Cloverdale

READ ALSO UPDATED: One dead following assault at Surrey strip mall

While the Surrey RCMP made the arrest, Transit Police have conduct of the investigation.

Asked if the suspect offered up an explanation for the theft, Hampton replied that “would be part of the ongoing investigation. There’s no real indication, as far as I’m aware, as far as what the motive was here, but like I said, that will be part of the investigation. It’s a strange circumstance, yeah.”

Anne Drennan, a long-time spokeswoman for the Transit Police, and Vancouver Police before that, could also not recall another case of a bus being stolen in this region.

But bulldozers, well, that’s a different story.

Decades ago, someone stole a bulldozer from a construction site in North Delta and drove it into Burns Bog, where in the nature reserve it continues to sink to this day, most of it now swallowed up in the muck beside a trail.

And then there’s that crazy incident on Dec. 16, 1993, when a 26-year-old man who had a bone to pick with the New Westminster police stole a D8K Caterpillar bulldozer from the Ritchie Brothers’ auction yard in Surrey and drove it across the Pattullo Bridge, chewing up asphalt along the way.

Surrey RCMP Inspector Dale Carr was a constable when he arrested the bulldozer thief, and earned a commendation plaque for it.

The thief, for his part, earned 90 days in jail.

“They said that he was unhappy with the fact that he’d been arrested in the previous week by the New West police department and they’d broke his sunglasses and weren’t prepared to replace them,” Carr recalled, many years later.

It was a Thursday, and he’d been eating lunch at the old Whalley police substation when the call came in. He “blasted” down King George Highway toward the bridge, devising his game plan along the way. “I think I’ll block him,” he thought to himself.

The big machine was destined for a gold mine up north, where there’s lots of ice and snow. It wasn’t intended for bridge pavement. The employees had tried to block the bulldozer with a truck but the thief pushed it aside and headed onto the Pattullo.

Carr parked his patrol car on the bridge and went running after it. Well, jogged, maybe. The bulldozer was only travelling about three kilometres per hour.

“He’s on a mission to go to New West,” Carr recalled. “Once it’s moving, what do you do?”

The driver started heading for the side railing after Carr jumped aboard. “I’m thinking to myself, if he hits the railing with the front, I have time to jump before it goes over. He’s totally ignoring me.”

People were running alongside the dozer, yelling “Shut the machine off.”

“I have no idea how,” Carr remembered. “I’m like, What?”

All of a sudden, Carr said, the guy jerked the dozer straight, and the Mountie fell off. He dusted himself off, got back up and by now the guy was wielding a crowbar as Carr was yelling at him to turn the dozer off.

With the thief distracted, another fellow on the other side of the dozer jumped on the machine and turned it off. Carr had a hard time trying to pull the thief off before realizing he had a seatbelt on.



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Tom on Twitter

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

Just Posted

Langley’s Jim Orlowski, a regular contributor to Through Your Lens, shared this picture of some bird swimming around in Brydon Lagoon. They were spotted while he was walking along the trail in the Nicomekl flood plains. They frequently cross paths with dozens of other walkers and park visitors enjoying the trail on a bright winter day. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
SHARE: Bird friends from Brydon

Send us your photo showing how you view Langley, and it could be featured in a future edition

Mark Chandler, outside of his extradition hearing at the Vancouver Supreme Court. (Langley Advance Times files)
Langley condo builder’s fraud sentencing in U.S. delayed due to COVID-19

Mark Chandler’s own lawyer contracted COVID-19 in December

People have noticed pine siskins dying in the area, part of a trend of larger numbers of the finch flocking to the area about every five years. The larger numbers result in crowding and increased spread of salmonella. (Wikipedia photo)
Langley birdwatchers seeing dead finch species in higher numbers

Pine siskins are in the area in larger numbers. They are prone to salmonella which is fatal for them

Electric charging stations, like this one outside the new North Delta Centre for the Arts, might be seeing more commercial delivery vehicles using them soon, if a provincial rebate program takes off. (James Smith photo/Special to Black Press Media)
Restaurants to get big rebates for electric delivery vehicles

The project boosts the rebates for electric commercial and industrial vehicles in B.C.

Langley Thunder (Black Press Media files)
Langley Thunder trades for Maple Ridge’s Cody Malawsky

BC Junior A Lacrosse League draft was held remotely on Thursday, Jan. 14

Keith the curious kitten is seen on Nov. 4, 2020 at the Chilliwack SPCA. Friday, Jan. 22, 2021 is Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Jan. 17 to 23

Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day, Pie Day and International Sweatpants Day are all coming up this week

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Terry David Mulligan. (Submitted photo)
Podcast: Interview with longtime actor/broadcaster and B.C. resident Terry David Mulligan

Podcast: Talk includes TDM’s RCMP career, radio, TV, wine, Janis Joplin and much more

Seasonal influenza vaccine is administered starting each fall in B.C. and around the world. (Langley Advance Times)
After 30,000 tests, influenza virually nowhere to be found in B.C.

COVID-19 precautions have eliminated seasonal infection

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau listens to a question during a news conference outside Rideau cottage in Ottawa, Friday, January 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau says Canada’s COVID vaccine plan on track despite Pfizer cutting back deliveries

Canadian officials say country will still likely receive four million doses by the end of March

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon shared a handwritten note his son received on Jan. 13, 2021. (Ravi Kahlon/Twitter)
Proud dad moment: B.C. minister’s son, 10, receives handwritten note for act of kindness

North Delta MLA took to Twitter to share a letter his son received from a new kid at school

Lilly and Poppy, two cats owned by Kalmar Cat Hotel ownder Donna Goodenough, both have cerebellAr hypoplasia, a genetic neurological condition that affects their ability to control their muscles and bones. Photo by Alistair Taylor – Campbell River Mirror
VIDEO: Wobbly Cats a riot of flailing legs and paws but bundles of love and joy to their owner

Woman urges others to not fear adopting cats with disabilities

Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam provides an update on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa on Friday, Jan. 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada’s top doctor says to avoid non-essential travel as B.C. explores legal options

Premier John Horgan says he is seeking legal advice on whether it can limit interprovincial travel

The Delta Hospice Society operates the Harold & Veronica Savage Centre for Supportive Care (pictured) and the Irene Thomas Hospice in Ladner. (The Canadian Press photo)
Fraser Health to evict Delta Hospice Society, open new hospice beds next door

Health authority will serve DHS 30 days’ notice when service agreement expires Feb. 25

Most Read