Canadian showdown: Mountie halts highway traffic for stubborn beaver
It was a perfect storm of Canadiana on a Vancouver Island highway Friday.
Mounties had to briefly shut down a lane of the Trans-Canada Highway to let the country’s official animal – a beaver – cross the road.
Greater Victoria’s Integrated Road Safety Unit was conducting speed enforcement on the stretch of highway also known as the Malahat when officers spotted a motorcyclist trying to slow traffic down the road.
“We saw something in front of him and we kind of thought it was a racoon,” said Const. Andy Dunstan. “Then one of my RCMP colleagues went up to find out what the commotion was, and it was a beaver in the right hand of two lanes.”
Dashcam footage shows the Mountie pull up to the motorcyclist as he tries in vain to usher the stubborn and sizeable animal off the highway.
The RCMP cruiser than backs up and drives toward the beaver several times in an apparent effort to scare it off the road.
“We found it quite amusing, it was pretty iconic that there was this RCMP officer trying to get a beaver out of the road,” said Dunstan. “As it turned out after a couple of minutes of hissing, by the beaver not by the RCMP officer, it didn’t want to listen to the sirens, it wasn’t particularly fazed by anything going on around it, it was quite obstinate and quite happily sat there in the middle of this lane way.”
At that point, the critter turned tail and waddled away into undergrowth on the side of the road, at which point police reopened the highway lane.
“It certainly lightened up the morning,” Dunstan said.
No word on why the beaver crossed the road.