NEWS

Toronto attack on cab driver highlights dangers of job

12/02/2013 07:42 EST | Updated 02/01/2014 05:59 EST
A brutal weekend attack on a Toronto cab driver over a fare he was owed is shocking, but not surprising, to fellow drivers who have dealt with similar situations in the past.

Toronto police say that two young men, believed to be 18 to 20 years old, hailed a Beck Taxi near College and Clinton streets in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Police say the men asked the driver to stop near Bloor and Dundas streets, but they didn’t pay when they got out.

When the driver followed them in an attempt to recoup the $15 fare they had accumulated, police say the two men began punching and then kicking him.

The suspects fled the scene and were last seen at Dorval Road.

Another cab driver came upon the injured man and called police on his behalf.

Police say that driver Maheswaren Iyampillai will recover from the injuries he suffered, but they describe the attack on him as being severe.

Driver in 'extreme pain' after attack

The injuries he suffered are on the minds of many of his co-workers at Beck Taxi.

Owner Gail Beck-Souter visited Iyampillai after the attack.

She told CBC News that he was semi-conscious, in "extreme pain" after the attack and had suffered a broken nose.

The incident involving Iyampillai has highlighted some of the dangers that cab drivers can face.

Munawar Chaudry, a driver himself, told CBC News that he has been punched by a customer from behind.

Fellow driver Adinew Chekol said that customers refuse to pay all the time, such as was the case in the weekend attack.

But Chekol said he would not personally follow such customers, though he also said it can be hard to predict what actions customers will take.

CBC News reached out to Iyampillai to ask him why he approached the men who attacked him, but his family said it was too difficult today for him to explain.

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