According to local B.C. Conservation Officers, a Ford Explorer got stuck last Friday in deep mud on private property, with that section of land being billed as sensitive wetlands. Video sent to Global News shows the SUV stuck deep in mud, with a woman claiming she had just purchased her first vehicle.
According to conservation officers, an investigation under the Water Sustainability Act the Forest and Range Practices Act has been initiated. The maximum penalty for the offence could be a fine of up to $1 million, imprisonment for not more than three years or both.
WATCH BELOW: The owner of a Ford Explorer is facing possible charges and fines after a mud-filled joyride on private property in Kelowna.
“We don’t take this type of activity very lightly, said conservation officer Ken Owens. The damage and effect to the environment can be very serious and altering. Everything from aquatic species, to carnivores and ungulates can be affected.
People need to respect the environment. We can’t afford to have people out there causing this type of destruction; there is a zero tolerance.
The property owner, Steven Corsan, told Global News that owning this property has given me a sincere appreciation for how seriously the City of Kelowna and the province of British Columbia take the conservation of our waterways and wildlife habitat. It is a level of environmental stewardship that I continuously work hard to meet and I have no tolerance for people who feel they have a right to disrespect and destroy our sensitive ecosystems.
In the late-night video sent to Global, as the property owner walks towards the stuck Explorer, the engine can be heard revving, multiple times. Upon reaching the stuck Ford, a conversation takes place, with a woman telling the property owner its my bad. I just need my boyfriend to help me take my car out. I just got an Explorer and its my first vehicle.
The owner added My truck is stuck. Im only trying to get it out, along with Im the idiot that drove down here, and its my first truck.
Corsan added trespassing is bad enough, but causing damage and then leaving a trail of litter in their path and disregarding the urgency to remove their vehicle from the wetland is completely inexcusable. I hope they receive the penalties they deserve.
Conversation officers say if you have any information regarding this incident, contact them at 1-877-952-7277.
A Kelowna property owner is not sure how exactly the vehicle became stuck on his property, but he does know a tow truck is the only way to get it out.
Steven Corsan owns the 19-acre property along Rifle Road in Glenmore, where he came across a Ford Explorer desperately spinning its tires after becoming deeply lodged in a sensitive wetland area.
“I thought they were illegal dumping, so I ran down and confronted them,” explained Corsan.
“They were trespassing and trying to pull their vehicle out of the wetland, but having no luck.”
Corsan then called the Conservation Officer, who installed a motion sensor camera to stop the pair from trespassing while trying to remove the vehicle.
“She needs a proper tow truck because they basically sunk the vehicle right in the swamp, which contains aquatic life and indigenous plans,” said Corsan.
“The vehicle could be leaking fluids and what not, so it’s disheartening to see such recklessness.”
According to Conservation Officer Ken Owens, the vehicle owner could be subject to a maximum fine of $1-million, three years in prison, or both.
"We don't take this type of activity very lightly. The damage and effect to the environment can be very serious and altering. Everything from aquatic species, to carnivores and ungulates can be affected,” explained Owens.
"People need to respect the environment – we can't afford to have people out there causing this type of destruction, there is a zero tolerance”.
Carson says he is has been working with the province to put a driveway into the property, which has given him an understanding of how seriously governing bodies take protecting wetlands.