Police have confirmed with CityNews that a fatal accident at Kennedy and Finch Monday morning was the result of street racing.
A 1996 Honda Accord slammed into a hydro pole and took out a phone booth and fire hydrant around 5:45 a.m. The impact sheared the car in two, with the front and back ends ending up on either side of a gas station.
The driver, a 25-year-old male from Scarborough, was rushed to Sunnybrook hospital where he was pronounced dead. His name hasn’t been released.
“Two vehicles were street racing southbound on Kennedy Road approaching Finch Avenue East,” police said in a statement. “One of the vehicles lost control just north of the intersection.”
Police say there was a 22-year-old passenger in the car who was ejected upon impact, but somehow managed to flee the scene without serious injuries.
“We do know that there was a passenger inside that vehicle that did survive that crash with very minimal injuries and that he fled the scene and later turned himself into us this afternoon,” said Sgt. Duncan Miller, Traffic Services.
Investigators are now looking for the second vehicle involved – a 2004-2006 two-door black Infinity G35.
Call police at (416) 808-1900 or Crime Stoppers if you have any information.
According to the surviving passenger, the driver of the black Infinity briefly stopped after the crash, helping extract him from the carnage before taking off.
Police have seized surveillance video from nearby businesses and are speaking to eye witnesses.
“I knew something really bad happened because the way it sounded was like a thunderstorm and suddenly it came to a standstill,” said Dean Sharma, who was in the area when the crash happened.
“It sounded like it was coming from a racetrack,” added another witness.
Police shut down the area for several hours for the investigation. They began opening the roads to traffic at around 1:30 p.m.
“Speed kills obviously, but making decisions like this, very poor decisions, ends up in tragedy. His whole family is going to suffer as a result of the poor decisions that were made this morning,” Sgt. Miller added.
Scarborough M.P. Jim Karygiannis released a statement Monday, saying he will be re-introducing his Private Member’s Bill to require vehicles to have ‘speed limiters’ in the wake of the accident.
“I have been told that there were two cars involved – racing each other – and that they were doing about 180km per hour,” he said. “Speeding reduces one’s ability to manoeuvre or stop the car safely and decreases reaction time in hazardous situations. Nearly 3,000 people are killed on our highways each year due to speeding. We have to stop this bloodbath!”
“My heart goes out to the family and friends of the young man who was killed today. Instead of giving thanks for their blessings, today will always be a day of sadness.” Karygiannis added. “It is time to end the carnage on our streets caused by street racing.”
At least six people have been killed on the roads in and around the GTA this long weekend.
A driver who suffered a medical problem on the QEW died before crashing into the barrier at Hurontario Street Saturday.
Two motorcyclists were killed in two separate crashes. A 27-year-old rider was ejected from his bike when he lost control Saturday around Halton Hills, and a 38-year-old rider was killed in another crash near Orangeville.
And outside the GTA, a 17-year-old driver was killed in a crash on the Seaway International Bridge in Cornwall Friday night.
These crashes happened while Toronto Police and the OPP carried out Operation Impact — a road safety blitz — for the long weekend.
OPP Sgt. Dave Woodford maintains most fatalities and serious accidents are preventable and too many people are speeding and not wearing seat belts.
“We’ve had 3,655 speeding charges, just this weekend alone, far too many,” he said. “622 people (were ticketed for) not wearing their seatbelts. Why?”
“Stay focused and be alert at all times,” he advised. “Driving is really a full time job these days…you have to be focused at all times.”
“We’ve seen four deaths so far…and that’s why we do have these initiatives.”
With files from The Canadian Press.