TORONTO—Seven people including a baby narrowly averted serious injuries on the afternoon of April 18 as scaffolding came tumbling down to the streets of one of Toronto’s most bustling neighbourhoods.
Police flocked to a construction site in the city’s Forest Hill neighbourhood around 2:30 p.m. after the accident at a building currently being turned into a new public transit stop.
Police, firefighters and paramedics teamed up to rescue seven people believed to have been trapped in the rubble. Toronto police Const. Allyson Douglas-Cook said those people were taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
“From what we know, everyone has been rescued from the building.”
Douglas-Cook said a baby was among those who had the closest call.
“Some of the material fell on the stroller,” she said, adding the baby carriage likely saved the infant’s life. “Fortunately the baby was not injured seriously. The injuries are quite minor.”
Douglas-Cook said all of the injured were close to or inside the building at the time of the collapse, but did not say whether they were working at the site or simply pedestrians passing by.
The accident took place at the site of a Chinese restaurant currently being demolished to make way for a station along a new route crossing Eglinton Ave, an east-west street that spans the bulk of the city.
John Jensen, chief capital officer at government transit co-ordinating agency Metrolinx, said the company is fully co-operating as police try to assess the cause of the collapse.
“Our primary focus is on the well-being of the injured, and our hearts and thoughts are out for them,” he said.
Hours after the collapse, the neighbourhood was still teaming with investigators probing the causes and consequences of the accident.
The provincial Ministry of Labour is also investigating.