NEWS

Falling concrete smashes car windshield under Gardiner Expressway

02/26/2015 08:19 EST | Updated 04/28/2015 05:59 EDT
A Markham woman says she’s afraid to drive after large piece of concrete fell from the Gardiner Expressway and smashed into her windshield.

Huma Siddiqi was about to get on the Gardiner Expressway from Lower Spadina Ave. earlier this week when a 13-centimetre chunk of concrete slammed into the windshield of her car. Her son, Ali Siddiqi, was in a vehicle behind her and watched the whole thing happen.

"The car saved me," said Huma Siddiqi, still visibly shaken up after the incident.

"If I’m just walking, maybe I’m not here today."

The City of Toronto said it’s investigating the incident to see if the concrete actually came from the expressway. In some cases, officials said, the debris could be from a vehicle travelling on the expressway rather than the structure itself.

The aging elevated highway’s integrity has been in the spotlight for years, highlighted by a 2012 report that found crumbling concrete in some parts of the roadway pose a significant safety hazard. The city has since taken a number of steps to maintain the expressway.

"I have to tell you, assure you that the Gardiner is structurally sound," said Coun. Jaye Robinson, chair of the city’s public works and infrastructure committee.

"It’s been a long time since it’s actually been identified that the actual piece, the material, came from the Gardiner."

Ali Siddiqi said he still believes the concrete, some chunks of which are still lodged in the wiper-area of his mother’s car, did come from the highway.

"It was just astounding," he said.

Ali Siddiqi said the repairs to the vehicle will cost an estimated $300.

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