Stolen truck pulled from Red River in Winnipeg

Low river levels in Winnipeg revealed a surprise on Monday afternoon — the side of a pickup truck with the mirror sticking above the surface like a dorsal fin.

Police were called to the Red River, along Churchill Drive near the St. Vital Bridge, around 3:15 p.m. after someone spotted the truck’s profile outlined by the water. 

The walking path alongside the river was blocked while a large tow truck was brought in to winch the vehicle out and haul it away.

Police later said the truck had been reported stolen on April 30. They did not say if it was stolen from Winnipeg or somewhere else.

The truck lies in the water off Churchill Drive, near the St. Vital Bridge. (Walther Bernal/CBC)

Police block the path alongside the river to enable a tow truck to pull the vehicle from the water. (Walther Bernal/CBC)

Police do not plan to release more information about it, because it is not a significant investigation, they said.

The river level has been dropping through the fall. It is down more than three feet since the start of the month and almost 13 feet lower than this time last year.

The muddy truck is hauled off on a flatbed truck after being pulled from the river. (Leif Larsen/CBC)

Water levels in Winnipeg are measured near the old James Avenue pumping station in feet above normal winter ice level, which is considered to be zero. For example, in the 1997 flood, the Red River crested at 24½ feet James, or 24½ feet about normal winter ice level at the old pumping station.

The normal river level in summer is 6½ feet James. On Tuesday, it measured in at 3.4 feet James.

Last October, the river levels were so high — following a wet autumn and early October snowstorm — that for the first time ever, the Red River Floodway was put into operation in fall.

The level recorded on Oct. 20, 2019, was 15.9 feet James.