The combined efforts of commercial drivers near Hudson’s Hope led to the recovery of a stolen piece of heavy equipment and the eventual arrest of two suspects from Williams Lake and Quesnel.

Hudson’s Hope RCMP received a report of a traffic incident on Wednesday just before 8 pm at the intersection of Highway 29 North and Farrell Creek Road.

“Police were told that a white Ford 1-tonne truck had been spotted traveling southbound from Wonowon towards Hudson’s Hope, towing a black flat deck trailer carrying a yellow skid steer,” Southeast District RCMP Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey said.

“Police also learned that the skid steer had been reported as stolen from the Fort Nelson area the night prior.”

Using CB radio channels, O’Donaghey said the complainant solicited the assistance of commercial water tanker truck drivers in the area who fully blocked the lanes of the highway at Farrell Creek Road.

“It is believed that the suspect vehicle attempted to proceed through the ditch around the improvised blockade, but became stuck,” he said.

“It was at this point that the two male occupants exited the pickup truck, brandished a rifle at the bystanders and eventually fled on foot into the woods.”

The highway was shut down for public safety reasons with RCMP officers from Chetwynd and Fort St. John alongside police dog services providing assistance.

The 36-year-old Quesnel man surrendered to police shortly after 10 p.m. The second suspect, a 42-year-old Williams Lake man, was not located until early Thursday morning.

“They both remain in custody and are expected to appear in court by the end of the day,”  O’Donaghey said. “The equipment was recovered by investigators at the scene. They face potential charges relating to the possession of stolen property as well as some drug-related charges as one of them was found in the possession of a controlled substance and firearm offences as well.”