News

Driver status unknown after vehicle plunge into Lake Ontario

By Jenny Yuen, Maryam Shah, Toronto Sun

Toronto Police and Toronto Fire at the scene on Cherry St. after a car went into the water on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016. (Stan Behal/Toronto Sun)

Toronto Police and Toronto Fire at the scene on Cherry St. after a car went into the water on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016. (Stan Behal/Toronto Sun)

TORONTO - 

Police divers are expected to resume their search Friday morning after a vehicle went off a bridge and into Lake Ontario the day before.

“We can confirm we have located the vehicle but there’s insufficient visibility down there to confirm whether or not there’s anybody inside,” Toronto Police Const. Craig Brister said Thursday night.

According to Toronto Fire, police were called just before 4 p.m. about a silver Toyota Corolla travelling north on Cherry St., south of Polson St., that hit a guardrail on the west side of the bridge and plunged into the water.

The vehicle went into the frigid lake “at a high rate of speed,” Toronto Fire South Command Platoon Chief Kevin Aucoin said at the scene.

A man riding a bicycle saw the crash and dove in to help, he said.

“There was a civilian that jumped into the water to attempt to rescue. He’s gone to the hospital with hypothermia,” Aucoin said.

The status of the driver remained unknown as the marine unit suspended their search overnight due to darkness.

“There were witnesses on scene that saw it go in, so we’re going by what witnesses said on our arrival,” Aucoin said. “I can’t say whether it was intentional or not. They’ll have to investigate the vehicle to find out.”

Aucoin estimated the depth of Lake Ontario at the site at about 7 metres (25 feet).

A couple of Toronto island residents heading into the city for the night by boat were caught by surprise when they couldn’t cross the scene.

Robert and Gabi Mew were on their way to dock their boat at their sailmaking canvas business on the east side of the bridge when the police marine unit said it wasn’t possible for the night.

The Mews tied up their boat on the west side instead.

“This is a big surprise,” said Robert. “We’ve been here for 25 years and this is a first. There’s been reasons why we haven’t been able to get under the bridge, where they’ve been doing work and other things, but never a car and a dead body, presumably. It’s pretty hard to imagine.”

jyuen@postmedia.com

 



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