Highway crash delays shipment of Manitoba-made hospital beds to B.C.

A photo of the semi carrying hospital beds on its side in a ditch along the Trans-Canada Highway near Sorrento in B.C.’s Southern Interior. Vidir Solutions says its beds were shipped back to its site north of Winnipeg for inspection following the Monday night crash. Submitted

A Canadian company that’s helping produce emergency response hospital beds says a truck carrying some of its products crashed in B.C.’s Southern Interior this week.

The accident along the Trans-Canada Highway happened on Monday night, near Sorrento, with the semi landing on its side in the ditch.

No one was injured in the incident, and the truck was recovered the next day. However, the 40 hospital beds, which were bound for Vancouver, were sent back to the company for inspection.

A photo showing the hospital beds after the crashed semi was overturned. Global News

A snowstorm was battering B.C.’s Southern Interior at the time, with Vidir Solutions Inc., of Manitoba stating that road conditions were bad.

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“Better safe than sorry in getting them checked (and inspected),” said Alyssa Gulay, a sales representative with Vidir Solutions.

Founded in 1987, the company specializes in vertical storage, but saw a business opportunity to create hospital beds. From design to production, the hospital bed timespan was around two months.

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Vidir Solutions is located in Arborg, Man., about 120 km north of Winnipeg, and has around 150 employees.

“We’re going to send the beds out as soon as possible,” said Gulay, adding they’re in talks with the customer as to when they could arrive.

Gulay said one customer had ordered 120 beds, with the possibility of another 160 more — which underscores the demand for hospital beds during the coronavirus pandemic.

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“The reason (why beds are in demand) is because there’s such a high demand that people are seeing high lead times,” said Gulay.

“I’m not surprised, to be honest, because the demand for them is so high right now.”


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