Veteran supervisor killed in Toronto subway collision
Published Friday, September 14, 2012 6:34AM EDT
Last Updated Friday, September 14, 2012 6:11PM EDT
A Toronto subway collision killed a 22-year veteran of the Toronto Transit Commission as he was supervising a team of maintenance workers, Friday morning.
Peter Pavlovski, 49, had worked for the TTC since 1990, most recently as a subway track and tunnel foreman, leading a crew of seven workers.
Pavlovski and his team were performing work on the northbound Spadina subway line, near Yorkdale station, when he and a co-worker were struck by a service train at about 5 a.m.
The injured worker was rushed to hospital with non-life-threatening head injuries and was later released.
The driver of the train was also taken to hospital with chest pain. He remained in hospital Friday afternoon.
Pavlovski was pronounced dead at the scene.
TTC CEO Andy Byford said the accident was a “shocking and tragic” loss and extended his heartfelt condolences to the victims’ families.
“This is a terrible accident, we are all in complete shock about this,” Byford told reporters at the site on Friday. “Our thoughts are with the families of the members of staff involved. Obviously our key priority is to find out what happened, to make sure the families are looked after, and to get the service restored for our customers.”
Pavlovski leaves behind his wife and three children, a 13-year-old girl and eight-year-old twins.
“Obviously this is a tragic day at the TTC,” Bob Kinnear, president of Amalgamated Transit Union 113, told reporters. “It is unfortunately a tragic reflection of the difficult job our members and our employees do.”
Service resumed to the seven stations between the Downsview and St. Clair West stations in time for the afternoon rush hour, but service was disrupted for more than seven hours as crews investigated.
Shuttle buses were used to transport passengers along the Spadina line during the disruption.
Commuters, however, seemed to be understanding.
“A worker died this morning. My little inconvenience really pales in comparison to that,” said commuter Bill Norman.
The TTC said it is investigating the incident and is co-operating with the Ministry of Labour and police to determine the circumstances behind the incident.
“What I want to understand, as soon as possible, is exactly what happened,” Byford told reporters. “Was it a desperate and unfortunate mistake, or was it some kind of deficiency on our part.”
Byford also pointed to the organization’s good safety record, saying that the last time a worker was killed was in 2007.
With files from CTV Toronto's Naomi Parness