ttc streetcar fight toronto

Video shows what feels like typical chaos of riding a TTC streetcar in Toronto

Riding the TTC used to only be a test of patience for commuters, but in 2023, riding public transit in Toronto is becoming more like a test of rider courage.

A video posted to TikTok on Wednesday shows a confrontation that occurred on Jan. 31 around 4 p.m. on the TTC route 510 Spadina streetcar.

It's nothing outrageous considering all the bananas things that have happened on transit in recent months, but instead, it's how ordinary this encounter feels that makes it noteworthy.

blogTO reader Serafina explains that after boarding a 510 streetcar at the intersection of Richmond and Spadina, a dispute broke out between "two men in the back — one holding crutches and the other wearing a blue hat."

She alleges that "the guy in the blue hat was asking that the other guy gets off the streetcar because he had been harassing and spitting on passengers."

A man can be seen shielding his child, who was recorded crying and confused during the incident.

Though Serafina claims she only witnessed and overheard the resulting altercation, she says that after the ensuing scuffle, "the dad with the kid would later state that his kid was also affected and harassed by the man with crutches."

The father of the child can be heard arguing with the man seen holding crutches as he attempts to re-board the streetcar, saying, "do not get on the train. That is it. Go get a different train."

It's not the wildest video to emerge from the TTC in the last few weeks, not by any measure, but it's the casual and seemingly experienced ways passengers react to the situation that tells a deeper story.

We are used to this. We have come to expect this.

Even when it isn't a brazen attack committed at random, there's a sense that something will undoubtedly go awry on your commute.

The mayor and TTC CEO have thrown police at the situation despite evidence that suggests it's a futile and costly endeavour, while critics of that move argue that it will further marginalize communities already facing discrimination, and fails to respond to a pressing mental health crisis spilling over into public transit.

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