There is no denying that we can do more to make Toronto’s subway system safer. More police are being deployed to patrol the subways in the hope of stemming an increase in crime in our subway system. However that won’t necessarily stop people from being pushed onto the tracks. Although those incidents are rare, other cities have addressed the issue by installing safety barriers. Tokyo, Paris, London, and Copenhagen already have safety barriers. Could Toronto benefit from safety barriers? YES! Will they be installed any time soon? NO!
The major problem with installing safety barriers in Toronto’s subway system is that safety barriers require an automated system, and right now Toronto’s trains are manually controlled. An automated system is in the works for Toronto, but it won’t be installed for another seven years. Even if we already had an automated system in place, Toronto doesn’t have the money to implement safety barriers which are estimated to cost anywhere between $5 million and $8 million.
Here are some safety tips for riding Toronto’s subway system:
- Be aware of your surroundings.
- Move away from anyone who looks suspicious.
- Stay away from the tracks, well behind the yellow line.
- If you drop something on the tracks, leave it there. It’s not worth your life. Instead let the person in the collector’s booth know and if possible they will have it retrieved for you by trained personnel.
- If you see someone fall onto the tracks, don’t go in after them. Instead shut off the power. There are power-off switches at either end of the platform. Inform the person in the collector’s booth and emergency personnel will be dispatched.