The owner of a Chilliwack trucking company who was attacked on social media after one of his drivers was caught on camera intentionally hitting a cyclist says the driver has been fired.
A video in a Tweet seen nearly 100,000 times showed a semi driver at the corner of Ontario Street and 12th Avenue in Vancouver driving through a green light into a cyclist who appeared to be intentionally blocking the truck.
The cyclist was with several others on bikes, and the truck driver did not stop when confronted by the person on a bicycle. He slowly drove into him, forcing him to pull his bike backwards to avoid being crushed by the truck driver who refused to stop.
"Freedom" includes being able to use your massive vehicle as a weapon without consequence. Is this professional truck driving? Are these the truckers crying for support?
— Anthony Floyd (@AnthonyFloyd) February 6, 2022
Shared on Twitter, the incident caused immediate outrage among cyclists and anyone familiar with the rules of the road.
“’Freedom’ includes being able to use your massive vehicle as a weapon without consequence. Is this professional truck driving? Are these the truckers crying for support?” said @AnthonyFloyd.
“That’s completely wrong,” said @Kevin_Eastwood. “Anyone who has taken a regular Class 5 driver’s licence test knows the duty of care falls on the driver not to hit a pedestrian. You’re not allowed to hit someone just because they jaywalked. And if you’re a commercial driver you definitely know that.”
Several other commenters accused the cyclist of endangering himself for confronting a rig in an intersection in that way.
The incident may not be uncommon given the angry protests from a small minority of truck drivers in Canadian cities of late, but this one triggered the online community when they saw a company logo on the side of the truck.
Dozens of negative Google reviews were quickly posted for Van Dokk Transport Ltd., a Chilliwack company. A company representative responded to all negative reviews to say the matter had been dealt with and they did not approve of the behaviour of the driver.
Another Twitter user called the company, and he was told the truck driver seen in the video involved in the hit and run with the cyclist had been fired.
“I’m incensed enough at the actions of this driver that I called the office of this Chilliwack-based trucking company to express my disgust,” Adam Smith said on Twitter. “I was told the driver has been terminated.”
When contacted by The Progress, Smith said he was prepared for a conflict on the phone, but he felt the “human on the other end” listened to him and was polite and sympathetic.
When contacted by The Progress, company owner Dustin Van Dokkumburg of Chilliwack confirmed what Smith said.
“We do not support or condone the actions of that driver,” Van Dokkumburg said via email. “This action was not permitted by us and we cannot stand behind it.
“You have your information correct, we have already removed the driver from his position here, and we want it to be known that his actions were his alone.”
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