Toronto

Elevator shaft fall leaves man seriously hurt

A 33-year old Toronto man suffered serious injuries after falling head first down an elevator shaft at a grocery store in Vaughan.

A 33-year old Toronto man suffered serious injuries after falling head first down an elevator shaft at a grocery store in Vaughan.

The incident occurred Wednesday evening at the Cataldi Fresh Market near Islington Avenue and Highway 7. The employee was working on the first floor of the building when he walked into a service elevator shaft and fell to the basement, said emergency workers.

"He was, as far as we understand, in the process of carrying product. It's unsure right now if he actually walked backwards into that area or forwards," said York Regional Police Sgt. Edward Jones.

Police still don't know why the elevator shaft was open and accessible when it shouldn't have been, he said.

The employee was rushed to a field behind a nearby high school, where an air ambulance then took him to Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre. He suffered numerous injuries, including broken ribs, fractured vertebrae and a head injury, police said. His condition was upgraded Thursday morning to serious from critical  condition.

The Ministry of Labour is investigating the incident. The police do not believe it is a criminal matter.