RCMP sign

A 22-year-old man has been arrested after police on Vancouver Island say he led them on a 150-kilometre pursuit in a stolen work truck.

Fortis workers were repairing a gas leak near Stewart Avenue and Brechin Road in Nanaimo Tuesday. An RCMP officer was also on scene to direct traffic when just before 1 p.m. a man came running down the street yelling that someone had stolen the FortisBC truck.

The Mountie radioed in a description of the truck and licence number before trying to track it down in his cruiser.

Police say another officer spotted the gas truck minutes later at the intersection of Comox Road and Terminal Avenue.

When the officer activated his lights and sirens, the truck driver sped off, driving over a curb and almost striking a pole, according to police.

The officer decided to shut off his emergency equipment and not follow the vehicle as the risk to the public was significant.

Unmarked police vehicles then caught up with the truck and followed it out of Nanaimo north to Campbell River, an hour and a half away.

Campbell River RCMP took control of the investigation and a suspect was arrested with the truck later that day, according to police.

The young man faces one count of possession of stolen property over $5,000, and was expected to appear in Campbell River provincial court on Wednesday.