Merritt RCMP investigate after heavy machinery destroyed by fire at Trans Mountain pipeline site - InfoNews

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Merritt RCMP investigate after heavy machinery destroyed by fire at Trans Mountain pipeline site

The truck destroyed in the blaze.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/ Merritt RCMP
May 20, 2020 - 12:09 PM

The RCMP is investigating after a piece of heavy equipment used on a Trans Mountain Expansion Project site near Merritt was destroyed by fire.

According to a Southeast District RCMP media release the Peterbilt rope truck was destroyed in a blaze during the early morning hours May 19, at a Trans Mountain Expansion Project site outside of Merritt. One week earlier fuel had been stolen from the truck and police say it was targeted "in an act of mischief."

RCMP says they do not yet know if the crimes were targeted or simply crimes of opportunity.

"The fire scene had been secured by Merritt RCMP, for a full examination completed by forensic specialists and fire investigators with the RCMP Southeast District General Investigation Section," RCMP Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey said in the release. "RCMP has since learned that there were individuals camping over the weekend in the immediate area of the impacted vehicle. GIS investigators are seeking to identify those campers, as they may hold key information."

the RCMP is asking motorists who may have travelled through the area of Highway 5A and Tillery Road, near Merritt, on the evening of May 18 and early morning hours of May 19, to review their dash camera footage and contact police.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Merritt RCMP at 250-378-4262 or the RCMP Southeast District GIS team at 250-869-2215, or remain anonymous and call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

A picture provided to police of the blue and yellow 2018 Peterbuilt tractor rope truck prior to the blaze.
A picture provided to police of the blue and yellow 2018 Peterbuilt tractor rope truck prior to the blaze.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED / RCMP

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