Toronto police have issued a public safety alert following a day filled with a high number of collisions around the city that injured a number of people.
“We’ve responded to over 30 collisions since noon,” police tweeted Wednesday night. “Some involve serious injury, please be cautious.”
Toronto Traffic Services Const. Clint Stibbe also tweeted about the rash of collisions, asking drivers to use “extra caution” when driving in the rain as pedestrian and cyclist safety is “in your hands.”
A 62-year-old female driver of a double decker bus was seriously injured after it collided with a car at Sherbourne and Gerrard Streets around 7 p.m. The bus mounted the curb during the collision and struck a pole in the area, causing wires to come down.
Around the same time, a male pedestrian, believed to be in his 30s, was struck by a vehicle at Ellesmere Road and Dundalk Drive.
Only a short time later, a man in his 80s was brought to hospital in serious condition after a collision on Old Park Road and Wembley Road just before 8 p.m.
In a little over a week between late September and early October, seven pedestrians have been killed in collisions.
“We need to keep in mind the mind of a motorist doesn’t see a pedestrian or a cyclist as a threat, they are thinking about other vehicles,” said Stibbe to Global News Thursday. “We are asking that, as a driver, you take that second look, slow down, especially if the weather is poor, such as rain or dark or a combination of the two.”
Stibbe also said that pedestrians should make sure to make eye contact with a driver, especially at a busy intersection where they are attempting to cross when a vehicle wants to make a right turn.
“Make sure that person takes a look and sees you before stepping onto the roadway,” he said. “Even if you have the right of way – drivers are making mistakes.
“We’re seeing pedestrians struck and killed, and you now have to take safety into your own hands. The same goes for cyclists.”
The three things all pedestrians and cyclists should do are always pay attention, not be distracted and always take that second look, according to Stibbe.
When looking at pedestrian collisions on a year-to-year basis, Stibbe said police see a spike in numbers beginning in September right through to mid-December, with the highest point coming in November.
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