Pedestrian hit and injured by driver in Willowdale


A pedestrian was hit by a driver at a major intersection in Willowdale on Friday afternoon, two days after a 20-year-old cyclist was hit at another major intersection to the south.

The pedestrian was taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries after being struck at Yonge Street and Sheppard Avenue at 5:51 p.m., Toronto Police tweeted.

A police traffic services officer was unable to provide further information about what happened or the extent of the person’s injuries in the third incident since Monday where a driver was injured a pedestrian or cyclist.

The crash follows another on Yonge Street and St. Clair Avenue around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday that claimed the life of Kartik Saini, an international student at Seneca College from India.

Police say the driver of a Ford F-250 pickup truck struck and killed Saini while turning right onto Yonge from St. Clair. Right turns are illegal at this intersection between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m.

« The driver of the Ford pickup truck struck the cyclist and continued north on Yonge Street with the bicycle and cyclist lodged under the vehicle, » police said.

Saini’s uncle, Parveen Saini, told The Star’s Lex Harvey in an interview in India, « Our family is broken. »

Monday late afternoon, a a cyclist suffered life-threatening injuries when a driver hit them near Kingston Road and Sheppard Avenue East and fled with the bike stuck under the vehicle. The police asked people for help in locating the driver.

Jess Spieker, a road safety advocate and cyclist who suffered traumatic injuries in 2015 when she was hit by a driver, noted that researchers tracked the increase in collisions shortly after daylight saving time.

It was dark when the pedestrian was hit on Friday. Saini was killed shortly before sunset.

Drivers have a duty to adapt to early darkness, Spieker said, adding that Toronto City Council’s « Vision Zero » plan to eliminate road deaths is a « continuing failure. »

« Arteries are deadly, but there’s no political will to install speed-calming measures like narrower traffic lanes, protected active transportation lanes, raised crosswalks, intersections protected, tight corner radii, curb extensions, etc.,” she said.

Spieker said safety advocates will be watching Toronto’s new city council for changes to slow traffic and make streets safer for pedestrians and cyclists.

“Given the considerable sums the city is spending on the Gardiner (East) Freeway, if the council does not increase the budget for Vision Zero, it shows that it is not taking the crisis seriously and avoiding future deaths. »

David Rider is Star’s City Hall Bureau Chief and a reporter covering City Hall and municipal politics. Follow him on Twitter: @dmrider


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