When the Toronto Raptors won the NBA championship, the entire city threw a grand celebration. An estimated two million people gathered in the streets to pay tribute to their men. However, this parade made the news for a lot of wrong reasons, namely with reports of gunfire injuring a couple of people. Unfortunately, a new incident arose, which blackened the city’s face even further
As it turned out, First responder units in Toronto were upset after a baby died during the Toronto Raptors victory parade. According to reports, the baby was suddenly taken ill during the celebration. Owing to the extremely large crowds and packed streets, emergency services were delayed getting to the child.
According to Global News, the baby became unresponsive at around 1:30 PM local time. In an instant, his mother alerted paramedics and police officers of the dire situation. Unfortunately, they were hampered by the cramped streets and the poor infant succumbed.
Later, paramedic and EMS unit chair for CUPE Local 416 Mike Merriman confirmed the tragic news. In spite of the fact that aid reached the child as quickly as was possible, the mother and child had to travel in a police car, instead of an ambulance.
Speaking to Global, Merriman suggested that Chief Mark Saunders rejected offers of help from other police services. However, this claim was quickly denied by the latter.
Saunders said, “We had over 525 resources that were there. What you saw in the public was not all the resources we had that were available. And I’m certainly not going to draw two million officers because that’s just not going to be possible.”
While the population turnout for the Toronto Raptors parade was not confirmed, it was estimated that over two million people were in attendance. Reports, stated that overcrowding was the main issue right from the get go. Staff were even forced to close down entry to Nathan Phillips Square due to overcapacity.
Merriman declared the event a “total disaster,” and even mentioned that another person suffered cardiac arrest during the parade. In this case as well, paramedics were unable to reach as soon as possible.
Some Canadians even recounted their experience and called on the city to improve in the future. According to a Twitter user, her friend was also injured at the event due to overcrowding. She said, “my friend and coworker was trampled. [Broke] her tibia which required a metal pole to be put in and her collarbone. It was a mess.”