PEI

Mountie dragged on Confederation Bridge by driver of stolen truck

There were some tense moments on the Confederation Bridge Tuesday morning after an incident that led to an RCMP officer being hospitalized, a P.E.I. man being taken into custody and the structure being closed for several hours.

Charges likely to be laid against 28-year-old P.E.I. man, according to RCMP

An RCMP officer is in hospital and a P.E.I. man is in custody after an incident on the Confederation Bridge, which links Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick, Tuesday morning. (CBC)

An RCMP officer was dragged "a considerable" distance by a driver in a stolen pickup truck on the Confederation Bridge that links New Brunswick with Prince Edward Island this morning.

The officer wound up in hospital and a man was taken into custody.

The incident resulted in the bridge, where no pedestrians are allowed, being closed for several hours.

RCMP said they received a report at around 5:45 a.m. that a man was on the 12.9-kilometre bridge.

Bridge officials found the man and were able to get him into one of their service trucks.

When the official who was driving the service truck went to speak with RCMP officers, the man moved from the passenger seat to the driver's seat and sped off toward the New Brunswick side of the bridge.

Confederation Bridge general manager Michel Lechasseur describes the tense situation on the structure Tuesday morning as a man stole a truck, dragged an RCMP officer and crashed into other vehicles. 1:07
P.E.I. RCMP Sgt. Leanne Butler said a Mountie was dragged by the truck before he managed to break free from the vehicle.

The driver then smashed the stolen pickup into two vehicles near the New Brunswick side.

"One vehicle was a civilian vehicle coming towards P.E.I. with one person in it. That person was not injured. And then the second vehicle that the stolen vehicle collided with, was another bridge vehicle," Butler said.

The bridge official in that vehicle was also uninjured.

The injured RCMP officer is in a Summerside, P.E.I., hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

The Confederation Bridge was closed until about 10:15 a.m., leaving long lines of traffic on both sides.

General manager Michel LeChasseur says it's the first time something like this has happened since the bridge opened in 1997.

"We've seen pedestrians on the bridge, that sort of thing before, but never any violent incident," said LeChasseur.

"All I can say about our bridge staff is I admire their courage and determination because they did a fantastic job."

Butler said charges are expected to be laid against a 28-year-old P.E.I. man.

A long string of traffic waited for the Confederation Bridge to reopen Tuesday morning. (Natalia Goodwin/CBC)