Message from the Executives
Working together during the tough times
The last couple of days have been long, tiring and difficult for our employees and our customers. The heavy rain that moved through Toronto on Tuesday evening caused severe flooding across the city. It affected homes, condos and apartment buildings, roads and a significant amount of TTC infrastructure, especially in the area around Sheppard West Station.
As a result, we had no subway service between Wilson and Finch West stations yesterday and into early this morning. Streetcars and buses, like other road vehicles, had great difficulty navigating some city streets as a result of high water. Long waits for our customers, diverted routes, flooded stations, shuttle service – all of it made for one of the most challenging days the TTC has seen in some time.
Despite these hurdles, I want to say how extremely proud I am of this organization for the strength, teamwork and, above all, hard work you showed to keep our system running and bring it back to normal service levels.
I know that Subway Infrastructure, Plant Maintenance and the ATC team worked miraculously through the day and night to get service back, that TTC crews, assisted by Toronto Fire Services, spent most of Wednesday pumping water from the flooded sections of Sheppard West Station. Electricians and Subway Transportation diligently inspected and tested the equipment that had been under water for several hours. Streetcar Transportation navigated challenging – and often harrowing – downtown roadways with professionalism, and the fully submerged streetcar at Queen and Dufferin was a vividly real example of the impossibly difficult challenges we faced in this storm.
I also know that while there were some unhappy customers out there, we also heard from several who appreciated the hard work, the long hours and the regular updates our Transit Control, Customer Service and Communications teams provided. Bus Transportation filled in the need for emergency shuttle service when the subway went down. Wheel-Trans continued to provide much-needed service. Stations helped ensure that customers were able to get the info – and safe access – at our subway stations and Safety and Station Services worked tirelessly to clean up the flood-damaged stations to ensure they were safe and clean for customers.
We can always use challenging situations to learn something – about how to make it better the next time or to look at what worked this time that we can repeat again. I want to hear from you – what did you see over the past two days that could be improved? What worked really well? Tell us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I don’t take this request lightly – I genuinely want to hear your thoughts and will action out every suggestion and idea that can reasonably make a difference, big or small, in how we handle challenging weather-related service issues. Thank you for all that you do.
Richard J. Leary
Chief Executive Officer (Acting)
August 9, 2018