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Nanaimo man allegedly crashes car through work site, fights with police

Driver’s car clocked at 131 km/h in 50 km/h construction zone, narrowly misses workers
A Nanaimo driver is facing multiple charges after crashing car through work site and allegedly assaulting an RCMP officer. (News Bulletin file photo)

A Nanaimo driver faces multiple charges after a car crashed through a work site and a police officer was assaulted early this morning.

The 20-year-old motorist is alleged to have been impaired and the car clocked at 131 km/h in 50 km/h construction zone, said police. He faces multiple charges. The incident happened at about 12:40 a.m. Wednesday, March 29, on the Nanaimo Parkway, where the roadway is temporarily closed at night to lay a water main.

According Nanaimo RCMP, the driver was travelling southbound on the parkway when he blew past traffic control flaggers who were diverting traffic onto a detour route bypassing the work site.

“One our members was stationary, on the highway, monitoring the southbound traffic … because the Third Street intersection is closed,” said reserve Const. Gary O’Brien, Nanaimo RCMP spokesman. “There were upwards of 20 workers and flaggers in place … the member sees a vehicle and clocked it going 131 [kilometres per hour] in a 50 zone.”

The officer allegedly witnessed the Mazda car blow past the flagger’s truck and traffic cones.

“It continues into the active construction site where there’s a ditch dug into the road,” O’Brien said.

The car narrowly missed the workers, went through the ditch at high speed, became airborne and landed, blowing out all four of its tires.

“The driver gets out and starts running, chased by our member who gets into an active fight with him and then some of the construction workers come and they help out, they get him under control and then some of our additional members showed up and they took him into custody,” O’Brien said.

The driver, allegedly, displayed “strong symptoms of impairment” but refused to give a breath sample. O’Brien said the driver also laughed throughout the incident, saying he didn’t care and that he wanted to go to jail.

He was held in Nanaimo RCMP detachment cells and released after he became sober.

He had yet to be formally charged as of Wednesday afternoon, but will face a number of charges including impaired driving, dangerous driving, refusing to provide a breath sample and assaulting a police officer.

“This is totally egregious,” O’Brien said. “Too many workers are killed on the highway by people who choose to ignore reduced safety speeds or are unable to process those because they’re impaired by drugs and or alcohol. In this particular case, this person checked all the boxes. He was impaired, he was driving and driving in a dangerous manner. We’re just thankful nobody was injured, this person has been taken off the road and he’s going to be held accountable – and we’d like to thank the workers who came to the assistance of our member.”

RELATED: Overnight closures planned on Nanaimo Parkway for water project

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Chris Bush

About the Author: Chris Bush

As a photographer/reporter with the Nanaimo News Bulletin since 1998.
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