One of the images of smashed windshields that circulated on social media after ice fell from Port Mann Bridge cables onto vehicles below on Dec. 19

Woman claims trauma, injury from Port Mann ‘ice bombs’

2012 'nightmare' on new toll bridge punctured car's roof, wounded passenger, civil lawsuit alleges

A Delta woman who says she was hit in the head by falling ice bombs on the Port Mann Bridge in a notorious 2012 incident is suing the province’s Transportation Investment Corp. for negligence.

Caryl-Lee Obrecht’s claim in B.C. Supreme Court says she was injured when large sheets of ice fell from the bridge’s cables and punched through the roof of the family car around noon on Dec. 19, 2012.

The first ice chunk smashed the windshield of the eastbound Ford Focus soon after it started over the newly opened toll bridge, according to lawyer Veronica Milne-Medved, who said Obrecht’s husband, the driver, had to stick his head out the window to navigate the rest of the bridge.

A second ice bomb caved in the car’s sunroof and a third punched right through it and hit Obrecht in the head, the lawyer said.

“The whole roof was bowing in and she had to lay on her back in a reverse pike position and put her two feet up to stabilize the roof so they could make it off the remainder of the bridge,” Milne-Medved said. “It was a nightmare, an absolute nightmare.”

Obrecht, who lost “quite a bit of blood” in the car, was taken to Surrey Memorial Hospital and treated for concussion and released home.

The car was one of several written off due to damage from falling ice that day.

But Milne-Medved believes Obrecht’s injuries are the worst.

She said her client continues to suffer from a constellation of post-concussion symptoms 18 months later.

Obrecht, a Surrey School District administrator, continues to receive ongoing medical treatment, according to her claim, and suffered lost income as a result of the injuries, which are alleged to include concussion, scalp lacerations, neck and shoulder injury, headaches, nightmares and post-traumatic stress.

The TI Corp. has not yet filed a response.

After the 2012 incident, engineers installed a system of brushes and scrapers that are winched up and down the cables to remove snow and ice build-up during the winter.

ICBC paid out more than $400,000 in damages after receiving 350 claims for vehicle damage.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Jeremiah Salahub, 41, (Photo: Surrey RCMP)
Surrey RCMP looking for man reported missing in Newton

Jeremiah Salahub, 41, was last seen 3 p.m. Oct. 21, at 72 Avenue and King George Boulevard

Participants in the annual Ride For Refuge charity event bike in front of the Cloverdale Community Kitchen Oct. 3. The event raised $15,000. (Photo submitted: Beverly Rennicks)
Participants raise more than $15,000 in local Ride for Refuge

Cloverdale Community Kitchen raised $5,000 more than last year

Surrey police investigate multiple stabbings at a Newton townhouse on Tuesday (Oct 20). IHIT says a man from Newton named Harpreet Singh has been charged. (Photos: Shane MacKichan)
Man charged with murder, aggravated assault in Surrey townhouse stabbings

Police say fight among family members lead to stabbings of woman, toddler and man

(Delta Police Department photo)
Police investigating indecent acts in North Delta park

Police received two separate reports of a man masturbating near the Mackie Library on Oct. 21

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry presents modelling of COVID-19 spread in B.C., March 25, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. sets another COVID-19 record with 203 new cases

up to 1,766 active cases in B.C., two more deaths

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

More and more electric cars are on the road, but one Chevy Bolt owner was shocked to see how much his BC Hydro bill skyrocketed once he started charging the vehicle. (Black Press file photo)
Lower Mainland man sees significant spike in BC Hydro bill after buying electrical vehicle

An increase should be expected, but Brian Chwiendacz experienced a 200-plus per cent hike

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The Anonymous YVR is an Instagram page that reviews restaurants and other establishments around B.C. based on how well they adhere to COVID-19 rules. (Instagram)
Anonymous Instagram page reviews COVID-19 safety measures at B.C. businesses

There are a number of public health orders various types of establishments must follow to slow virus’s spread

The Vancouver Canucks and Abbotsford’s Jake Virtanen have agreed to a two-year deal with an average annual salary of $2.55 million. (@Canucks Twitter photo)
Abbotsford’s Jake Virtanen, Vancouver Canucks agree to two-year deal

Two sides avoid arbitration, Virtanen will receive average annual salary of $2.55 million

Most Read