Abbotsford gravel company assists with emergency on Sumas Mountain
When emergency responders had difficulty getting to a man who was in medical distress on Monday morning, an Abbotsford gravel company came to the rescue.
Doug Lukiv, an electrician with Mainland Sand and Gravel, said the situation began at about 9:30 a.m., when an employee spotted a firetruck sliding down Sumas Mountain Road near Page Road.
Mainland is located nearby on Cox Road – off of Sumas Mountain Road – along the Fraser River on the north side of Sumas Mountain.
The truck was having difficulty navigating the steep, narrow road due to the snow and ice that had accumulated over the weekend.
Insp. Martin Sunderland of Abbotsford Fire Rescue Service (AFRS) said the department was responding to a "sickness call" at a remote residence, but could not make it all the way, nor could an ambulance that was sent to the scene.
"They (the vehicles) were all kind of littering the road but nobody could make it to the home," Lukiv said.
Some employees of Mainland helped guide the firetruck onto their site, and then foreman Louie Szlovicsak offered assistance to the crew.
Mainland had already prepped some of its vehicles for the weather conditions and had a four-by-four standing by with chains on its tires.
Szlovicsak used the vehicle to transport some of the emergency responders and a stretcher up the hill to the home, which had a long driveway deep with snow.
The man, in his 60s, was treated on the scene and then loaded on the stretcher, with assistance from Fraser Valley Search and Rescue volunteers who had been called for assistance before Mainland got involved.
He was then taken in the four-by-four to a waiting ambulance down the hill, and transported to hospital.
"As far as we know, he's doing all right," Sutherland said.
He applauded the efforts of everyone involved.
"The complex rescue illustrates the excellent spirit of cooperation that exists between the different local emergency services. It also shows how, when emergencies occur, civilians, such as those from Mainland, rise to the occasion."