Surrey’s giant Canadian flag came floating to earth early Saturday (Dec. 19) during a big wind storm.
Thankfully, members of Surrey Crime Prevention Society were there to collect it while on patrol.
The Guildford-area flag, which measures 80 by 50 feet, fell in front of vehicles driven by the organization’s staff member Jaspreet Jandhu and volunteer Darren Brierley.
“Because of COVID rules, they drive separate vehicles right now,” said Karen Reid Sidhu, executive director of Surrey Crime Prevention Society. “They just went through the light on 104th (Avenue), around 12:30 early Saturday, and the flag literally fell from the sky in front of them. They had to back up the work vehicle, because it got caught up in the tires and was strewn all over the road. The thing is the size of a football field.”
The crime prevention group tweeted photos of the flag rescue Saturday afternoon.
Last night our team was out observing & reporting in the @CityofSurrey when #Canada fell from the sky! Yes that’s right – the flag on the big pole came off & landed in front of the teams vehicle. Everyone is safe & the flag is now home @SurreyNowLeader @GlobalBC @CTVVancouverBRK pic.twitter.com/ThFvXMHNi3
— Surrey Crime Prevention Society (@PreventCrimes) December 19, 2020
“There were no vehicles around at the time, thank goodness,” Reid Sidhu added. “So they dragged if off the street and into the parking lot, opened it up and then folded it up as best they could.
“Could you imagine if it had landed on a vehicle? It would have caused an accident, for sure.”
Later that morning, the flag was delivered back to operators of Go North Surrey GM.
“They were so appreciative, because it wasn’t damaged and it’s worth around $5,000,” Reid Sidhu said.
The wind “was pretty spectacular that night,” she said. “The fact that it didn’t rip and didn’t fly into the Sheraton building, it’s amazing. It’s quite light when it’s not rolled up, because then it’s pretty heavy, and it just floated down to the street.”
It’s going to take a few days to get the flag back flying again, according to what the dealership management told Sidhu and her team.
In early November, for the first time in close to a year, a giant flag waved in the wind above the car dealership. The landmark flagpole is located on property where a Barnes Wheaton car dealership operated until the Oct. 1 transfer of ownership to Go North Surrey GM.
In the months prior to November, repairs to the pole’s interior ladder and winch systems stalled attempts to fly the flag, with all-new ropes, rigging and more.
The 86-metre flagpole was brought to Surrey from the Expo 86 site in Vancouver in 1987, a year after the fair ended. Auto dealer Sherrold Haddad,who brought the flagpole to his business at a cost of close to $250,000, died last March at age 90. In 2012, Haddad sold the dealership to Barnes Wheaton.