Toronto man stands in the middle of his street to slow speeding drivers

Alex Weaver is so frustrated with speeding drivers on his North York street that he's now stepping out into traffic to slow them down.

Police urging him to stop immediately, warn his actions violate Highway Traffic Act

Alex Weaver isn't shy about striding out onto Park Home Avenue to slow down drivers he thinks are going faster than the 40 km/h speed limit. (John Rieti/CBC)

Alex Weaver is so frustrated with speeding drivers on his North York street that he's now stepping out into traffic to slow them down.

What he's doing violates the Highway Traffic Act, according to police, and Weaver says he knows he's taking a risk, but he's vowing to keep it up.

Weaver lives on Park Home Avenue, north of Bathurst Street and Sheppard Avenue West, where the speed limit is 40 km/h. However, he says cars routinely go 60-70 km/h in the area. The situation is most dangerous west of Senlac Road, where there are no sidewalks and parents and children walk on the roadway.

Weaver says if one speeding car loses control, there could be deadly results.

"It would be really, really bad — the loss of a child because of some idiots racing down our street," he told CBC Toronto.

"That's all it's going to take."

Weaver has been calling Toronto police about his concerns, but says the force hasn't done enough. 

Briefly, a digital sign went up telling motorists their speed and it had some positive results, according to Weaver. But then it was taken down.

He's also starting a petition to ask city hall to add speedbumps to the street.

Not all of Alex Weaver's conversations with speeding drivers go well. (John Rieti/CBC)

But for now, he's waving down drivers, waiting for them to roll down their windows and lecturing them about their speed.

"Do you know the speed limit on this street?" Weaver asked one driver.

"Who are you?" the male driver responded, before flipping Weaver off and accelerating away.

"That's the type of people we get when I stop them. The finger, or the F-word," he said after the incident.

Weaver is hoping the city, which provides these signs, will eventually install speedbumps on his street. (John Rieti/CBC)

Traffic Services Const. Clint Stibbe warns Weaver is putting his own life at risk.

"We have to advise him to stop this practice immediately," Stibbe said.

"The last thing that we want to see is one of these drivers strike that individual — intentionally or not — and have this individual end up in hospital or even, possibily, dead."

Police from 32 Division have been called to the area four separate times in July and August and have issued speeding tickets in the area, Stibbe said.

Toronto police have told Alex Weaver to stop approaching motorists about their speed, but he's vowing to keep it up until he sees some improvement. (John Rieti/CBC)

Stibbe notes police in 32 Division have a number of driving complaints to deal with, but "officers attend this location where possible and while balancing the needs from the other areas of the community."

Toronto police hand out more tickets for speeding than any other offence, Stibbe said, and issues like the one Weaver's facing pop up on streets all across the city. Only drivers changing their behaviour will make a difference, he said.

Weaver, who has been tracking speeders for more than a year now, plans to start recording video of speeding drivers on his iPad. He's also considering standing on his lawn with a hair dryer — with hopes of tricking motorists into thinking he's holding a radar gun.

About the Author

John Rieti

John Rieti covers city hall and city issues for CBC Toronto. Born and raised in Newfoundland, John has worked in CBC newsrooms across the country in search of great stories. Outside of work, catch him running or cycling around, often armed with a camera, always in search of excellent coffee.

With files from Metro Morning

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