The TTC is investigating after a video posted on social media showed a bus driver resting his leg on the dashboard and eating a bag of chips while driving.
“He’s driving with his one right wrist and with both of his hands he’s eating a bag of chips,” 17-year-old Gabriel Cordova told Global News Tuesday, while recounting his recent experience on an Eglinton Avenue bus.
“I’m thinking that’s totally jeopardizing the safety of everyone in the vehicle, let alone everyone outside of the vehicle.”
Cordova said with the construction activity on Eglinton Avenue, there could have been a safety issue.
“If [the driver] were to, for example, hit a pothole or get into some sort of trouble — it’d be really difficult for him to grab the steering wheel and steer us to safety,” he said.
TTC spokesman Brad Ross called the behaviour demonstrated in the video “disappointing,” because the rules for bus operators are clear.
“Eating while the bus is in motion, or the foot up on the dash, those are behaviours we do not permit. We will be interviewing this operator today and making some decisions about next steps after that,” he said, adding that disciplinary action could include a warning, a suspension or dismissal.
“It’s not how we train our operators … we set the bar even higher because we are transporting 1.8 million people every day.”
Ross said operators are allowed to eat or drink while the vehicle is stopped.
Meanwhile, Cordova also said he has had great experiences with other TTC streetcar and bus drivers and said by publishing the video he wanted to start a conversation about this type of behaviour.
“I hope the guy isn’t penalized too much – that wasn’t my intention at all,” he said.
“I just would really hope it’s brought to the attention of TTC staff that this kind of behaviour is really detrimental to not only the way the TTC looks, but the safety for all of the commuters and the driver.”
Story by Nick Westoll (Global News)