Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders’ vehicle was seen illegally parked in front of a fire hydrant in downtown Toronto Wednesday afternoon.
The police-issued, black SUV was spotted by Global News cameras around 12:30 p.m., on Victoria Street north of Dundas Street East, near Yonge-Dundas Square.
A Global News cameraman waited by the unattended vehicle for more than 30 minutes until Saunders and his driver returned and left.
Saunders declined to speak to the issue on camera, but said in an emailed statement to Global News that his driver “goes to great lengths to park appropriately.”
“They must also, however, ensure the safety and security of the Chief of Police. If there is no other option, they will park where they need to, in order to provide that safety and security should something happen,” the statement read.
“The driver was close to the vehicle in the event firefighters needed access to the hydrant.”
Toronto police tagged 1,467 vehicles and towed 298 after a four-day rush-hour traffic enforcement blitz earlier this month.
Illegal parking has been a cash cow for the city in recent years; an analysis of Toronto’s parking-ticket data by The Canadian Press found the city collected more than $24 million between 2008 and 2014 in fines for people who parked too close to hydrants.