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Vancouver Island police chief recovering after being hit by deer during bike ride

The rider, Andy Brinton, has been treated for a broken clavicle and several broken ribs

Brinton’s encounter with a charging deer happened on Salt Spring Island, B.C.

Imagine the scenario: you’re out for your morning ride, enjoying nature, when out of nowhere a deer suddenly lunges at you from the underbrush, knocking you right off your bike.

For a B.C. cyclist and chief of police, that scenario recently became a reality.

On the morning of Sunday, Andy Brinton, police chief for the West Coast municipality of Oak Bay, B.C., was enjoying a brisk morning ride on Salt Spring Island, between the British Columbia mainland and Vancouver Island. Around 10:30 a.m., Victoria News reported, a deer rushed out of the forest and collided with him, while Brinton was riding at a “moderate” rate of speed.

The result of the hit, reports say, was “significant,” with Brinton thrown from his saddle and left with a broken clavicle and several broken ribs. Taken to hospital in Victoria for treatment, the police chief underwent surgery the following evening.

At the time, Brinton was cycling along a paved road, shrouded with trees on either side, and it’s unclear what may have startled the animal enough to charge.

“I’ve spoken to Chief Brinton,” deputy police chief Ray Bernoties told reporters. “He informed me that he was cycling at a moderate rate of speed when a deer suddenly charged out of the bushes and struck him. I’m told it’s rutting season but I don’t know what, if any, effect that had on this deer’s behaviour.”

Brinton is currently on the mend following his encounter, and is expected to make a full recovery.