‘Absolutely heartbroken’: Community advocate says woman’s death in St. Clair Village was preventable

A woman in her 50s is dead after being hit by a garbage truck in St. Clair Village. Melissa Nakhavoly with community reaction and why advocates say the intersection has been problematic for some time.

By Patricia D'Cunha

At least one community advocate says the death of a woman Thursday afternoon while crossing a street in St. Clair Village could have been prevented.

Police say a woman in her 50s was walking westbound and crossing Winona Drive at St. Clair Avenue West around 1 p.m. when she was struck by a garbage truck that was making a right-hand turn onto Winona.

Paramedics say the woman was pronounced dead at the scene.

“It was the right of way for her, she was supposed to cross – it wasn’t the trucks,” said Meryem Aslan, who witnessed the incident. “I was shaking when I saw her face. It was really bad.”

People who live in the area have complained multiple times to the city that the intersection has been dangerous for some time.

“I am absolutely heartbroken for this woman. She was probably going shopping at No Frills and she was let down today by the City of Toronto,” said Julian Back, who runs a community safety Facebook group. He says he’s outraged by what happened, pointing out the intersection has been problematic for some time – something he has asked the City to address on multiple occasions.

“I urged [the city] to close off the condominium entrance where this truck was going to go and pick up garbage weeks ago because it was not built properly. They cannot do the turns inside that delivery area.”

“This has been a problem for years. But the condo is brand new and they have an entrance here for deliveries. They did not design the delivery area well enough to make it safe for our area,” he adds.

Police say the driver of the truck remained at the scene but did not have an update on if any charges would be laid.

Police say this is a tragic reminder that everyone needs to pay attention when approaching a crosswalk.

“The advice I would give is even if you have the right of way, always have a look around before you cross,” said Insp. Peter Wehby.

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