The recovery of a rolled-over dairy truck on Highway 1 was estimated to cost more than $500,000. More than 40,000 litres of milk was lost, with an estimated value of $50,000. Ben Lypka/ Abbotsford News

Rolled-over dairy truck in Abbotsford lost 40,000 litres of milk

Truck removed Sunday, Jan. 19, with specialized equipment to upright vehicle

“There’s no use crying over spilt milk” is a saying that probably doesn’t apply when 160,000 glasses’ worth are lost in a single Highway 1 crash.

On Sunday night, a large rolled-over dairy truck was recovered from the side of Highway 1 just east of Whatcom Road, where it had been sitting wrecked since the morning of Jan. 15.

The milk hauler’s recovery was valued at over $500,000, and approximately 40,000 litres of milk was lost, a spokesperson for the BC Milk Marketing Board said in an email. At $5 for a four-litre jug of milk, the total dollar amount in spilled milk would be over $50,000 alone.

The spokesperson said the crash occurred on Jan. 15 at around 2 a.m. following a snowfall, icy roads and blowing snow. This was five hours before the highway was closed from Chilliwack to Abbotsford.

“A third-party transport truck moved in front of the milk hauler. This led to blind conditions, which caused the milk truck to leave the roadway,” the BC Milk Marketing Board said. “We’re pleased to report the driver is fine and will recover.”

Abbotsford Police put out a warning on social media that morning, just before the highway was closed, to warn drivers to stay home due to the treacherous conditions. They said emergency crews were having trouble reaching all the stranded drivers.

The dairy truck was removed between 7 and 9 p.m. on Sunday because it was the safest time to remove the vehicle and not impede traffic, said the BC Milk Marketing Board.

“Specialized equipment is needed to upright the truck and tanker to save it from being a complete loss.”

It was one of the last wrecked vehicles to be removed from the highway, which was littered with dozens of vehicles abandoned throughout last week.

Consequently, tow services were extremely busy, according to employees at several tow-truck companies in Abbotsford.

MSA Towing received around a dozen calls alone, according to Kirpal Banwait, a manager at the company.

“[On Jan. 17], there were 30 [abandoned] cars between Chilliwack and Abbotsford,” Banwait said. “We drive by and we can count them easily. You can see them all over.”

Dwayne Robertson works at F & W Towing with his brother Frank. He says his brother was working non-stop as soon as the extreme weather conditions set in.

“Off the highway [we retrieved] probably a dozen and a half [vehicles],” Robertson said. “But I mean, we [were] pulling people out of everywhere, all throughout the city, for the whole week.”

In the period from Jan. 3 to Jan. 19, 70 per cent – 32,412 out of 46,095 – Dial-a-Claim calls to ICBC came from the Lower Mainland.

RELATED: 70% of ICBC calls in the last two weeks came from Lower Mainland

Robertson said safety is a big factor when towing wrecked vehicles off the highway. While they try not to block a lane when retrieving a car, sometimes it’s unavoidable.

“If it’s a bad spot, we’ll have another truck there, kind of as a blocker,” he said. “We all want to go home at the end of the night, right?”


@portmoodypigeon
patrick.penner@abbynews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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

Just Posted

COVID-19 tests come back negative in remote First Nation community

“There are no suspected cases in the community at this time.”

Wildway Farms open for business in Hagensborg

Local entrepreneurs Gwyneth Anderson and Joseph Battensby are hard at work at their new business

Young boy finds mask stolen during recent break-in

Gage Pootlass immediately took the mouse mask back to its rightful owner, Kathleen Booth

Bear gets into garbage at Thorsen Creek Landfill after waste disposed into wrong bin

A grizzly bear accessed garbage that was put in the wrong bin and ended up outside the electric fence

Canada to match donations to Lebanon relief

Canada is directing all of its aid for this crisis directly to humanitarian organizations, not the Lebanese government

Bear put down after being found on Vancouver Island kitchen counter

Bear trapped and killed near Ucluelet after repeated instances of entering sheds and homes

Who can dismiss the Governor General? A look at protocols and possibilities

The Governor General is appointed by the Queen, on the advice of the prime minister

Second phase of NHL draft lottery set for Monday

Each club eliminated from qualifying round has a 12.5 per cent shot at the No. 1 pick

University of Victoria, rowing coach sued over alleged ‘fat shaming’ and verbal abuse

Lawsuit says Barney Williams subjected coxswain Lily Copeland to offensive and belittling language

1 year since a B.C. teen died in a skate park, his family still waiting for charges

Carson Crimeni’s final moments were broadcast on social media

NHL playoffs: Canucks to meet St. Louis Blues in Round 1

Vancouver takes on defending champs beginning Wednesday

Simon Cowell breaks his back falling from electric bike

Incident happened at his home in California

VIDEO: Internet famous Yukon-based bhangra dancer explores Vancouver Island

Gurdeep Pandher spreads joy through dance, forms cross-cultural connections amid pandemic

Most Read