Pedestrians share near-death experiences on the streets of Toronto
If you live or work in downtown Toronto, chances are you've had at least a few close encounters of the vehicular kind.
Whether it be a sports car that just barely skids to a halt as you step off the streetcar, a delivery truck that mangles your bike in the process of backing up, or a bus that crosses way over into your lane while turning left, we've all got stories about that one or 100 times we almost got smushed.
.@SarahEDoucette @TO_Cycling— Janet Joy Wilson (@jsquaredink) July 6, 2018
5:45 pm driver proceeding from a stop & going NB on Colborne Lodge Dr turning WB.
Man riding his bicycle SB out of #highpark & driver does not SEE him.
No one else at intersection.
Man has to avoid being hit & slides narrowly missing wheel 1/2 pic.twitter.com/lUhkygFDpH
With Toronto on track for one of the worst years in history regarding cyclist and pedestrian deaths, road safety has become a constant topic of discussion around the city.
In the spirit of taking matters into one's own hands, someone in Toronto has been adhering posters to street poles around local crosswalks.
"Almost hit by a vehicle at this crosswalk?" read the signs. "To share: #NearMissToronto."
Since police have abdicated their role in enforcing traffic laws in Toronto, & mendacious elected officials say one thing but vote another way, civilian efforts like this will have to take over, for now. Just spotted on a college st pole. #NearMissToronto pic.twitter.com/7SN1D5rFuf— Person of Ontario (@shawnmicallef) July 6, 2018
No name, phone number or organization is listed on the posters themselves, and the hashtag contains only anecdotes and photos from citizens who've decided to use it.
Half way across the crosswalk harbord at Robert when a west bound car almost wiped me out! Plenty of time to stop but he chose to play chicken with my life! Wtf is Wrong with to drivers? #NearmissToronto #VisionZeroTO— C (@c_drudi) July 9, 2018
Some citizens are reporting patterns of behaviour that they say endanger lives on the regular.
Everyday at college and havelock. The bigger the truck the less likely they stop at the crosswalk. It’s a matter of time until someone is killed. #nearmisstoronto— Conor (@Conor67448400) May 31, 2018
And sharing their experiences in trying to bring dangerous drivers to justice.
(2 of 2) after multiple calls someone told me that I could go into the station and fill out a form to report a specific incident, and then said, “good luck, honey” in a way that suggested trying to do anything within the bureaucracy would be pointless. #NearMissToronto https://t.co/5nED23N9Bb— SuzanneAlyssa Andrew (@SuzanneAlyssa) July 6, 2018
Others are just sharing photos of the signs to illustrate how bad the problem has gotten
#tragic #citylife #time to reclaim #publicspace for the people of #Toronto. Let us put #cars back to their place. #carfreeToronto pic.twitter.com/ufi1YfM2Rl— Yiftach Fehige (@FehigeToronto) June 13, 2018
And they're not the only ones.
Spotted a few months ago at St Clair West & Keele... pic.twitter.com/m5VKnMknEv— Popcorn’s Scratch Pad 🐾 (@Popcorns_Views) July 6, 2018
Fortunately, things are looking up for road safety in Toronto.
City Council recently approved an additional $22 million in spending on safety measures amidst pressure from public figures, community groups and citizens who were distraught to learn that 93 people had died on Toronto's roads in the first two years of Mayor John Tory's "Vision Zero" plan.
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