BREAKING NEWS: SFU Road Report cameras capture emotional story

Students came to the rescue as the 143 struggled to make it up Burnaby Mountain

Illustration of a person smiling at the camera. Behind them, the snowy Gaglardi Way going up to SFU, and students visibly grimacing as they push the bus up the hill.
ILLUSTRATION: Hailey Gil / The Peak

By: Hannah Kazemi, Staff Writer

SFU News — There was a heartwarming display of strength at Simon Fraser University’s Burnaby Mountain campus last week as students were seen pushing a bus up the mountain. SFU’s traffic cameras caught the whole thing on tape. It was leaked and posted on TikTok, with the video gaining over 50,000 views within only a few days.

The video depicted a wet and dreary day at the cusp of the intersection of Gaglardi Way and University Drive. We see the 143 make its way up Gaglardi Way and then come to a sudden stop. The hazard lights go on and the door opens as the bus driver steps out to walk around the bus to see what went wrong, then the video shows her staring blankly at the bus as the sleet continues to pour down. 

A few minutes later, we see the passengers from the bus get off and take position behind the bus and through the intersection with begrudging looks on their faces, ultimately terminating at SFU’s lower bus loop. The students have been commended for their leadership — SFU has noted that in times like these, validation is the ideal acknowledgement for the brave students accustomed to the nasty weather on the mountain every winter. 

Readers, SFU is unique for its location atop Burnaby Mountain, and heroic students. The mountain is also notorious for its accessibility challenges — particularly in the winter months when snow and ice are on the ground. The transit system suffers in these situations as well, and in times like this, there is nothing like seeing our intrepid students taking matters into their own hands — literally — to get their bus up the hill.

Students Ari and Jordan* were part of the team of students pushing the 143 bus, connecting SFU to the Burquitlam Station, up Burnaby Mountain.

*Names have not been changed to reflect student bravery.

“All of a sudden it just stopped and started rolling backwards a little bit,” said Ari. “It was like the gas just, like, stopped working.” Jordan noted that they were almost to the crest of the hill when the bus stalled and the driver got out to investigate. “She looked super pissed, like it had happened before. All of us just sat there for a minute waiting for her to come back and tell us what happened, but she never did.”

The students had looks of agitation on their faces as they recounted the conditions of the day. “The bus driver came back on the bus and told us to start pushing,” said Ari, bewildered.

“None of us moved for a minute because we thought she was bullshitting us. Before we knew it, we were standing in the rain and snow pushing the fucking bus up the mountain. My socks were squishy and moist for the rest of the day. It was so gross. I’m never taking that bus again!”

“It’s almost like all of this could have been preventable if SFU had made an announcement,” Jordan nodded. 

What bravery shown by these students! Jordan and Ari both said that “it was unlike anything that has happened before,” which highlights the tenacity of SFU’s students. Their willingness to step up is commendable and highlights just how well-rounded and full of initiative they are. They certainly exemplify SFU standards.

This has been SFU News, where we know student’s groans of frustrations just translate into their willingness to engage with their work! Until next time.