Mayor Rob Ford allegedly drove past the open doors of a streetcar sparking a run-in with a TTC worker, the transit union president said Friday.
Ford drove past the open rear doors of a Dundas St. streetcar near McCaul St. on Wednesday, Amalgamated Transit Union Local 113 president Bob Kinnear said.
“My understanding is Mr. Ford did pass the open doors of a streetcar,” Kinnear said. “The operator counselled Mr. Ford on the serious safety violation and the potential danger of doing that. From there, my understanding is that Mayor Ford contacted the TTC.”
The TTC interviewed the employee and the employee was put back to work.
Kinnear said he didn’t know what time the incident occurred.
Rushing the doors of an open streetcar can lead to a traffic ticket.
It can get frustrating for operators to see cars rushing the doors of an open streetcar throughout the day, Kinnear said.
“It becomes very concerning for our passengers and the safety of our passengers,” he said. “We’re not opposed to our members advising the public of our rules in the interest of safety.”
But Kinnear added they don’t encourage operators to “interact with motorists” or leave the driver’s seat.
Kinnear said the mayor did roll down his window and “had some comments for the operator.”
“I don’t know specifically what those comments were,” he said.
The union boss said it’s not the first time Ford has complained about one of his members to TTC management.
“It’s not surprising,” he said.
The TTC was tight-lipped about the run-in Thursday night.
TTC spokesman Brad Ross refused to reveal what streetcar route the incident occurred along but did say the employee was “counselled” not to leave the driver’s seat in the future.
“As far as we’re concerned the matter is closed,” Ross said. “We’re not going to comment on the incident.”
The mayor’s office refused to confirm any details of the incident when contacted Thursday.
Am I the only one who’d like to see some warning lights on the backs of streetcars, so drivers can tell if it is stopping for a traffic light, or to let passengers on/off? And what is the rule for stopping BEFORE the doors open? Are we supposed to be clairvoyant, and KNOW when the doors are about to open? (ahh, I feel better getting that off my chest..!)