New Brunswick

Ont. driver says truck going wrong direction in N.B. nearly caused accident

Just before midnight on Friday, Shaun Castle says he was driving on the Trans-Canada highway, West of Hartland, when he saw a transport truck headed directly his way.

RCMP say vehicles travelling in the wrong direction is a common problem on New Brunswick highways

RCMP say there are several reasons vehicles mistakenly travel in the wrong direction on highways, including drivers missing the exit or becoming distracted. ((CBC))

Just before midnight on Friday, Shaun Castle says he was driving on the Trans-Canada highway, West of Hartland, when he saw a transport truck headed directly his way. 

It was going in the wrong direction, travelling at 110 to 120 kilometres an hour in the westbound lane, according to Castle.

He didn't have to swerve out of the way because the truck was in the passing lane on the four-lane highway, Castle told his wife, Peggy Shaw.

"He said it happened so quickly, you kind of go, 'Oh, did that really just happen?'" Shaw said.

"It was raining and dark, so he wasn't able to see the [truck] company or anything."

Castle reported the incident to police, but police weren't able to locate the truck.

Vehicles travelling in the wrong direction is a common problem on New Brunswick highways, according to RCMP Cpl. Mario Maillet.

"It happens quite often, especially on the main highways, like on Highway 2," he said.

Maillet says that most of the time, nothing serious happens from these mishaps and when the officers investigate, the vehicle is long gone.

"We can only presume they've taken off in the right direction on the highway," said Maillet.

Last year, police received a report about a transport truck driving in the wrong direction on Highway 1 near Hampton for nine kilometres.

Police say in that case, the driver was in the wrong lane because he had swerved in the opposite direction to avoid an accident, and was looking for a spot to turn around.

Reasons why drivers drive in the wrong direction

Maillet says there are several reasons vehicles mistakenly travel in the wrong direction on the highway, including drivers missing an exit or becoming distracted.

"I don't think there's more that can be done. Usually there's good signage, the exits are marked properly," he said.

Castle was travelling from his cottage in St.-Edouard-de-Kent to his home in Peterborough, Ont.

He stayed the night with family in Edmundston before beginning his second day of travel on Saturday.

His wife says she's relieved he's OK and that there weren't any accidents reported.

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