A boulder tumbled from a rock wall and destroyed Langley driver Matt Ruscheinski’s semi on Jan. 18. Matt Ruscheinski photo

UPDATE: Boulder crushes B.C. driver’s semi

Matt Ruscheinski recounts terrifying ordeal along Fraser Canyon

No one is to blame for an accident in which a falling boulder crushed Langley driver Matt Ruscheinski’s semi truck.

ICBC has declared the incident as ‘no fault.’

Ruscheinski, who has been hauling modular buildings for the past 20 years, was driving his custom-built truck past Spences Bridge, B.C. on Jan. 18 when his rig was crushed by the giant rock.

Ruscheinski told the Times on Jan. 30 that ICBC is classifying the accident as a comprehensive claim.

“They (ICBC) paid me based on the declared value (of the truck), being that I had just recently purchased it,” Ruscheinski remarked.

Reflecting on the incident in the Fraser Canyon, Ruscheinski said, “It happened super fast.”

“Basically, I was driving down the highway in a straight stretch of road for a little ways and I saw boulders the size of beach balls coming off the side hill.”

He has seen small rocks fall and hit the ground in his past travels, so with no traffic around, Ruscheinski moved his truck to the centre of the road to avoid them “in case any of them bounced on the road a little.”

But just as he was approaching the small rocks, an entire section of the rock wall gave way.

“Everything fell right in front of me,” Ruscheinski said. “It was literally in the blink of an eye. I don’t even think I was able to hit the brake pedal before I hit the rock.”

Ruscheinski said the sound of the boulder hitting the front driver’s side of his truck “was a giant crunching noise.”

“I went from 80 km/h to nothing in about three feet,” Ruscheinski said.

“It was instant. Thank God I had my seat belt on.”

He says his back and left shoulder are pretty sore from the accident, because of the way his seat belt grabbed him and pushed him back.

“I took the dashboard to the leg and my left hand took a pretty good wallop between the dashboard and the windshield, because I was holding onto the steering wheel,” Ruscheinski said.

While he has been stuck behind fallen rocks, waiting for highways to reopen, this is the first time Ruscheinski has been directly involved in a rock slide

“I’ve been stuck behind mudslides and the odd avalanche, stuff like that, but nothing like this,” Ruscheinski said. “I’ve never been in any kind of accident, anywhere close to this.”

Ruscheinski said he’s lucky to be alive, but unlucky in the sense that he had just finished building his truck.

“I’ve been in the industry for a lot of years, but this is kind of my first step into going in as an owner/operator,” he said last week. “It’s a little stressful now, at this point.”



troy.landreville@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

Before and after photos of Langley driver Matt Ruscheinski’s truck that was crushed by a boulder near Spences Bridge, B.C. on Jan. 18. Matt Ruscheinski photos

Just Posted

New bus route to ‘replace’ Greyhound along Trans-Canada Highway

Rider Express Transportation says they will soon begin a bus service from Winnipeg to Vancouver

Where to find Langley election results

Times reports as ballots are tallied Saturday

VIDEO: North Langley Kodiaks shut out North Surrey Bears

Defensive battle Saturday ends in Langley’s favour

A campaign to give municipalities more say over marijuana advertising

Langley Township wants to avoid a Washington-State-style flood of advertising

Spartans have a rough weekend

Women’s hockey team takes on top-ranked TNT

VIDEO: First legal cannabis purchases as midnight strikes in eastern Canada

Newfoundland and Labrador was the first province to kick off the sale of cannabis, just after midnight local time

Boeser tallies in OT as Canucks beat Penguins 3-2

Vancouver wins without star rookie Pettersson

U.S. pot firm urges Trump to deny Canadian producers ‘competitive advantage’

The challenge for U.S. firms lies in the fact that while recreational cannabis is legal in nine states and medicinal pot in 22 others, it remains illegal under federal law

Mayor of Kamloops says ‘history has been made’ with vote on B.C.’s lone pot shop

The store to be run by the province in B.C.’s Interior is opening Wednesday as pot sales become legal across Canada

Government says imprisoned Canadian terror suspects must face consequences

Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale showed little sympathy Tuesday for such individuals who now want to return to Canada

How rules for inmate segregation in Canada will change under Bill C-83

Federal government proposing changes to rules around inmates in federal correctional institutions

Canada Post union issues strike notice; rotating strikes could begin Monday

Union says rotating strikes will begin if agreements aren’t reached with bargaining units

Carole James avoids questions on B.C.’s payroll tax (with video)

Green MLA Adam Olsen cites huge tax increase for local business

Most Read