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Modified van loaded with gasoline seized in Coquitlam
Police have seized yet another van modified with massive tanks to carry stolen gas, this time parked across the street from a Coquitlam elementary school, CTV News is reporting.
The cube van was found loaded up with large plastic containers around 6 p.m. Wednesday. A hazmat team was called to the scene and drained about 200 litres of gas from the tanks.
RCMP Cpl. Jamie Chung said the vehicle posed a serious safety risk to the surrounding residential neighbourhood.
“Gasoline fumes are extremely flammable,” he said. “It’s basically like driving a bomb in the back of a truck.”
The gas van was the fifth discovered in Metro Vancouver in the past two months, following three that were busted in Vancouver and one in Surrey.
Vancouver Police Const. Brian Montague said black market gas is nothing new, but drivers have been calling in more tips after a dangerous incident in October that saw a van burst into flames on busy Oak Street.
Three of the last four gas fans were discovered thanks to calls from the public.
“It may be a case of where you’re filling up your tank at a gas station and the person next to you or behind you is putting a disproportionate amount of fuel into their vehicle,” Montague said.
“It may be someone that’s using multiple cards at a gas pump.”
Chevron said it’s training employees to spot and report offenders, and the company is working with police on comprehensive new security measures.