Crash personal for new transit chairman
Councillor says family member hurt
The deadly Westboro station bus crash has impacted Allan Hubley on three levels: as the new transit chairman, as a Kanata councillor and as someone with a family member in hospital.
Hubley said Saturday a family member was a passenger on the bus and was in critical condition. He declined to go into further detail.
The Kanata South councillor said he got word about the crash minutes after it happened Friday afternoon.
The Route 269 bus was heading to the Bridlewood community in his ward and there’s a good chance many of the passengers are Kanata residents. After Tunney’s Pasture, the westbound bus is scheduled to stop at Bayshore and Moodie stations before stopping again at Eagleson station in Kanata.
Hubley said he spent time in the community after the crash before heading to city hall for Friday evening’s news conference. He’s been in close contact with transportation general manager John Manconi.
A few families have contacted Hubley for assistance. He talked to a mother whose son was in the hospital. A passenger needed help getting her possessions.
Hubley said he’s focused on helping his constituents. There might be a community gathering, but it’s still too early to say, he said.
“It’s going to be at least days until we get the extent of who all the victims are,” Hubley said.
He said Barrhaven Coun. Jan Harder contacted him shortly after the crash, since she was in a similar situation in 2013 when a double-decker bus collided with a Via Rail train in her community.
Six people died in that collision.
“She reached out to me right away,” Hubley said. “She’s walked this path. This whole thing has made it very fresh for her.”
It was only a month ago that council appointed Hubley chairman of the transit commission. Not only is his job to take care of residents’ concerns in Kanata South as their elected representative, he’s also tasked with overseeing OC Transpo.
The first job for Transpo is to keep the transit system running and make sure employees have the resources they need, he said.
Hubley said it’s too early to say how the transit commission will handle the investigation or any future discussion about double-deckers.
The city’s focus is on helping the families of the dead and those who are injured, he said.
“We’ll be there for them,” he said, “whatever they need.”
We’ll be there for them, whatever they need.” Allan Hubley