Man on crutches fatally injured by dump truck
Pedestrians resumed crossing against red flashing signals in a Riverdale intersection soon after paramedics removed a man’s body just after mid-day Friday.
The 57-year-old, a student at nearby City Adult Learning Centre (CATC), is the GTA’s 10th pedestrian killed on streets within 11 days.
His name was not released.
Toronto Police Traffic Sgt. Tim Burrows said the victim was walking east on the south side of Danforth Ave., on a green light around 11:30 a.m. when he was hit by a large eastbound dump truck that turned south onto Broadview Ave.
His crutches lay next to the body near a sidewalk curb outside a Pizza Pizza outlet.
As a reporter waited on a north sidewalk at the intersection in mid-afternoon, a woman clutching her young son’s hand crossed to the south side, where only a small police chalked cross marked where the pedestrian fell. A cyclist then pedalled north.
Both adults ignored the blinking red-hand-shaped no-crossing signals.
At mid-day, as police took measurements and photos, CALC student Max McGowan, 18, said too many pedestrians “cross when they’re not supposed to.”
CATC guidance counsellor Anita Sachanska said the victim enrolled last week for his next classes.
“I used to see him in the hallway,” she said, adding “he was very friendly ... he said hello to everybody.”
Program leader Ray Wolf said he was “cheerful, but had difficulty getting around” to lower hall classrooms and on nearby streets.
Principal Mike Rethazi said he “made an announcement to the students to be careful when they are out,” then held a staff meeting.
He didn’t know the man, “but we all felt pretty awful. It’s been very traumatic.”
This was the first such fatality at the school, which has more than 2,000 students, Rethazi said.
The school’s flag was lowered to half-mast.
The driver of the Gio Contracting Inc. truck stopped 80 metres south of the intersection, where vehicles were barred by police for about an hour.
This was the fifth pedestrian-vehicle fatality on city streets since Jan. 1, compared to two by the same time in 2009, Burrows said, adding 31 were killed last year.
Three other pedestrians were struck by vehicles in Toronto through the day, none fatally.
• A woman in her 30s hit on an Allen Expressway ramp at Lawrence Ave. around 7 a.m. had head injuries.
• A man stepping off a Bathurst streetcar at College St. had undisclosed minor injuries.
• A woman was clipped by the mirror of a car making a turn at Martin Grove Ave. and Steeles Ave.
“The biggest factor is human error by both pedestrians and drivers,” Burrows said. “And most of these cases seem to happen on days like this, clear skies, good visibility and dry roads.
“It’s everyone’s responsibility,” he said.
Burrows said streets “are only as safe as people choose.”
Investigators asked anyone with information to contact police at 416-808-1900 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-8477.