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Stupid Halloween prank on a TTC driver and bus.

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TTC driver hurt by flying pumpkin

By CHRIS DOUCETTE AND

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A TTC driver was injured when a large pumpkin came crashing through the windshield of his bus and showered him with glass on Halloween night. (SUN MEDIA)

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A TTC driver endured a fright when a large pumpkin came crashing through the windshield of his bus and showered him with glass as he drove through the city's west end on Halloween night.

The bus had passengers on board and was travelling along Mimico Ave. near Elizabeth St., north of Royal York Rd. near Lakeshore Blvd. W., around 9:30 p.m. Wednesday when two teens jumped out and hurled a basketball-sized gourd at the front of the public transit vehicle, Toronto Police said.

The pumpkin smashed into the passenger side of the large front window and sent shards of glass flying into the bus, hitting the 37-year-old driver in the face.

It was "a prank gone wrong," Staff-Sgt. William Hurley, of 22 Division, said yesterday.

He said a 50-year-old woman sitting at the front of the bus was also hurt by the flying pieces of sharp debris.

Both the driver and passenger were taken to a nearby hospital and treated.

"People may consider this a Halloween prank, but I don't think there's anything funny about it," TTC spokesman Marilyn Bolton said. "I'm certainly not laughing."

She said the bus driver, who somehow brought the vehicle to a stop without causing an accident. "From what I hear, he was pretty shocked," Bolton said.

The driver, whose name was not released, will likely take a couple of days off work.

"This could have been a lot worse, for the bus driver and his passengers," Bolton said.

Hurley said investigating officers reported about 15 to 20 teens lingering on the south side of Mimico St., just east of Royal York Rd., at the time of the incident.

Police describe the two they are looking for as white male teens, about 5-foot-8 and 130 pounds.

Anyone with information is asked to call police at 416-808-2200 or Crime Stoppers 416-222-TIPS.

UPDATE: The driver is going to be ok, they got the glass out of his eye, and he is taking some time off.

He is a really nice guy from what other drivers tel me and he also is been with the TTC for a while.

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the TTC D40LFs are a cursed bus at this time of the year.

Last time this happened was in 2004 iirc and it was also a D40LF. i have a photo somewhere of a D40LF at New Eglinton with pumpkin that cracked the windshield.

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Wow. The Ontario e.coli generation strikes again!

Do kids in Ontario even attend school?

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7344 is back in service again, I rode it on 192. It now has the Auto Announcements screen installed, but it's not functional yet. The destination sign is a bit messed up, too.

IMG_0225_ttc_d40lf_192_7344.jpg

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7344 is back in service again, I rode it on 192. It now has the Auto Announcements screen installed, but it's not functional yet. The destination sign is a bit messed up, too.

IMG_0225_ttc_d40lf_192_7344.jpg

Nice to know. I'm guessing the sign will be like that until it's rebuilt unless they can fix that problem easily at Queensway.

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7344 took more damage than it looked like. I rode it today and there were two major problems with the windshield. First, when it started to rain and the driver turned the wipers on, both wipers starting moving left and right and forward and backward uncontrollably, as if they were high! They mostly just moved in a circle doing nothing. Also the effected "new" windshield, along with the driver's windshield, and the front windows were rattling uncontrollably (not even holding them would stop the constant rattling) both when the bus was stationary, AND when the bus was moving.

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I read in the Metro today that the bus driver involed doesn't want to go back on the job.

Understood, if you get a pumpkin through you're windshield, you'd be a little nervous to get back behind the wheel, any wheel.

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Understood, if you get a pumpkin through you're windshield, you'd be a little nervous to get back behind the wheel, any wheel.

Or even worst, someone suicide on the subway by jumping off the platform and scared the crap out of the operator!

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Or even worst, someone suicide on the subway by jumping off the platform and scared the crap out of the operator!

1 of my closest friends has already had a "one under" in front of his bus, it shook him up a bit, but with his job previous to TTC, He has dealt with death and dead bodies, so it didnt freak him out too much.

Here is a Article I found.

TTC operators are 'sitting ducks' Passengers increasingly punch, slap, spit on, verbally abuse drivers, transit commission says

Nov 07, 2007 04:30 AM Michele Henry

Staff Reporter

When he started driving a bus 10 years ago, Lee's biggest worry was other cars on the road.

Today, his main concern is passengers and pedestrians.

Lee, 37, who did not give his last name, has been spit on three times in the past year, has been verbally abused almost daily – and last week he was taken to hospital in the middle of his shift to have shards of glass removed from his eyes after someone hurled a pumpkin at his windshield.

"It's getting worse out there," Lee said yesterday. "I believe this is my worst year yet."

Recovering from his ordeal at home, waiting for his eyesight to return to normal from being intermittently blurry, the driver said he's become afraid of his job. Lately, instead of attending to the road, he's been on the alert for potentially harmful patrons.

"I'm terrified to go back to work," he said. "I'm always thinking `What's going to happen next?' I came to work to do a job. This shouldn't be happening."

Around 9:30 on Halloween night, Lee spied a "large orange thing" hurtling toward him as his bus, the Royal York 76, barrelled down Mimico Rd. in the city's west end. His bus was headed toward a crosswalk crowded with kids, trick-or-treaters and a young couple wheeling a baby stroller.

Before Lee's brain could register that his bus was about to be struck by a 9-kilogram pumpkin, he slammed on the emergency brake and hoped for the best. The bus stopped short of hitting anyone.

"The next thing I knew, the windshield exploded," he said, noting the pumpkin made a dent in the front window, but didn't crash right through it. "Glass sprayed about 10 feet back into the aisle."

Lee, who couldn't open his eyes after the bus was struck, and a passenger were treated for injuries. Police are searching for suspects.

TTC chair Adam Giambrone said operator abuse is an issue of "increasing importance" to the TTC, as assaults seem to occur about every other day.

"It's not acceptable that they're assaulted while they're doing their job. Operators are slapped, punched, spit on. ... Verbal abuse happens quite frequently."

He said that cameras slated to be installed on buses and streetcars, and shields currently being built into buses, will not only help curb crime toward TTC users – eight were mugged in the last two weeks – but are also possible solutions to the violence against drivers.

Gary, 52, says his love of the job is riding on those new additions to his workplace. He and other drivers have no choice but to open their doors at every stop, leaving themselves vulnerable to whoever wants to hop aboard.

That's one reason many operators don't report abuse, said Gary, who was threatened with a knife last year. Perpetrators are likely to be out of jail in 24 hours and many promise to seek retribution.

"Even the police tell you he'll get back out and come and get you," said Gary, who did not provide his last name. "Even though I've got a 2-year-old and a 5-year-old to think about, I always report it because that's my job."

With fares grazing the $3 mark, patrons are becoming more hostile about paying, operators said, adding that society as a whole has less respect for TTC drivers.

"We're sitting ducks," said Dino, 43, whose eyes fill with tears when he talks about the night he was held at gunpoint, two days before Christmas in 1999.

Since then, he's been assaulted seven times, including being threatened with a knife and punched in the face. Despite the troubles he has faced, he continues to do his best: He will be given a TTC Award of Merit today for rescuing a 14-month-old girl who got away from her mom Sept. 17 and nearly crawled into traffic.

Dino, who also would not provide his last name, spotted the toddler, about to reach Eglinton Ave. W., near Royal York Rd. He stopped his bus and scooped her up.

"We do a lot of good for this city," Dino said. "We don't deserve to be abused."

Lee agrees, but said such abuse is par for the TTC operator's course.

Every day he and thousands of others brace for being yelled at, insulted, and having their buses pelted with eggs.

"I don't even tell my family that it happens anymore," Lee said. "It just happens too much."

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It's small, but I make sure to say "How's it going", or "what up" to a driver, and say "Thanks", or anything to that effect when I leave.

You'd be surprised how many drivers are taken back by that small gesture.

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I read in the Metro today that the bus driver involed doesn't want to go back on the job.

I'm sure the company will try top accomodate him in another positon on compassionate grounds if possible or he could apply to collectors or maintanance, etc,. There are options, unfortunately some do quit altogether and I don't blame them one bit. Nobody should have to put up with the s&*t these guys do, and drivers screens or not, I figure it's only going to get worse.

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Ouch. I don't get why these idiots do the kind of crap they do to a driver. Is it that they aren't paying the proper fare or is it that they're are just assholes who want attention. If I was the driver, I'd be smart by driving the bus (if the guy stayed on) call up control, get them to call the police to meet up at an intersection to arrest the guy. If they want to start something, so be it. But you don't get in my face and start something by spitting or stuff like that.

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Ouch. I don't get why these idiots do the kind of crap they do to a driver. Is it that they aren't paying the proper fare or is it that they're are just assholes who want attention. If I was the driver, I'd be smart by driving the bus (if the guy stayed on) call up control, get them to call the police to meet up at an intersection to arrest the guy. If they want to start something, so be it. But you don't get in my face and start something by spitting or stuff like that.

If only it were that easy.

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I remember watching a CTV news video awhile back of a Translink driver getting spit on. He spit back at the passenger, started harrasing him and tried to block him from entering his connecting bus. What if all drivers were like this?

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I remember watching a CTV news video awhile back of a Translink driver getting spit on. He spit back at the passenger, started harrasing him and tried to block him from entering his connecting bus. What if all drivers were like this?

Firstly, that's assault(spitting), secondly it's harrassment, and thirdly, he is forcibly detaining someone on his bus. Those are 3 serious charges right there all of which you're not supposed to do. If people on the bus witness this there are major consequences for the driver. Pretty sure 2 are Criminal Code and 1 Human Rights offence. Fortunately they are NOT all like this. Most are professional enough not to resort to the same gutter level tactics and behaviour like that of some idiots in society. Apparently this driver was no different than those same and probably had neither the training nor the skillset to deal with that situation or chose not to use them. 2 wrong's don't make a right.

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If anyone hasn't seen the video Kyle is refering to, it's on Youtube:

(Note: This video contains subject matter and language that my not be appropriate for all viewers. Please use discression when viewing this video.)

Back to the incident with the TTC driver, I wish him all the best and hope he can eventually come to terms with what happened.

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Firstly, that's assault(spitting), secondly it's harrassment, and thirdly, he is forcibly detaining someone on his bus. Those are 3 serious charges right there all of which you're not supposed to do. If people on the bus witness this there are major consequences for the driver. Pretty sure 2 are Criminal Code and 1 Human Rights offence. Fortunately they are NOT all like this. Most are professional enough not to resort to the same gutter level tactics and behaviour like that of some idiots in society. Apparently this driver was no different than those same and probably had neither the training nor the skillset to deal with that situation or chose not to use them. 2 wrong's don't make a right.

As rarely as this happens, I agree with you completely. There is no reason that a driver should harrass a passenger - they are supposed to be protecting the civility of our society. Sometimes people can lose control of themselves, and if bus drivers (like all/most other public service workers) do not receive conflict-resolution training, they should. Bus drivers in particular should also be trained to control their emotions in the face of something which makes them want to react otherwise, for the safety of their passengers.

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the TTC D40LFs are a cursed bus at this time of the year.

Last time this happened was in 2004 iirc and it was also a D40LF. i have a photo somewhere of a D40LF at New Eglinton with pumpkin that cracked the windshield.

They desperately need to be rebuilt.

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