Three TTC employees fired for texting while driving public transit vehicles

Three TTC employees fired for texting while driving public transit vehicles

Texting while driving: illegal since October 2009 (Image: Lord Jim)

At this point, it’s not even a surprise: TTC driver caught operating a vehicle dangerously and/or in violation of the Ontario Highway Traffic Act. Again, not terribly surprising: TTC driver caught and filmed by a passenger with a cellphone. And still yet unsurprising: it makes the front page of the Toronto Sun. The only thing that is actually surprising at this point is that TTC operators don’t realize they’re likely under constant sousveillance. The results of being caught on camera breaking the law is—unsurprisingly—dismissal.

From the Sun:

The Sun has learned the three drivers are losing their jobs after being caught on riders’ cameras texting while driving their buses.

A source familiar with the case confirmed that all three are being fired.

The quick dismissals come just days after the Sun published a TTC rider’s photo of an operator texting while driving the 165 Weston Rd. North bus. Two more pictures of drivers with their eyes on phones while they sat behind the wheel surfaced quickly Friday and the TTC vowed to investigate.

Boy, when the TTC said they were taking this seriously, they weren’t kidding. When the news of these textings broke on Friday, we weren’t sure whether or not to join in on the two-minutes hate with the rest of Toronto’s news. It looks like some of the other actors in this little drama have some regrets: Mike Schmitz, the commuter who took one of the incriminating photos, is quoted by the Toronto Star as saying “That’s not what I wanted at all. Not at all… I feel pretty bad now.”

For what it’s worth, Schmitz probably shouldn’t get too upset. In the grand scheme of things, he actually did the right thing (seriously, texting while driving a bus at 50 km/h is really dangerous). Given the new management at the TTC and most importantly Rob Ford, it was unlikely that something like this was going to end any other way.

TTC drivers facing the axe [Toronto Sun]
• Texting TTC drivers fired [Toronto Star]