Fire? What Fire? TTC Public Info Missing In Action (Updated)

As anyone around Toronto knows, a major downtown fire on Queen east of Bathurst has caused the rerouting of the Queen, Bathurst and Spadina streetcars on February 20.

Details can be found at The Star and there are good photos of the fire itself on The Torontoist.

Meanwhile, over at the TTC’s service advisories page, all is silent. It’s nice to know that the TTC can disrupt three busy streetcar routes but not bother telling people how they should plan to travel around the area.

Maybe what we need is a multi-billion-dollar public information system so that people could walk to their carstop and be told that there is no service. No, they probably wouldn’t be able to make that work either, and I am sure stops on Bathurst and Spadina would be happily telling people that the next car would be along in 10 minutes or so.

Update 1: The TTC has posted a hotlink to a notice about the Queen car on their main page, but their brand new Service Advisories page is still silent on this situation. So much for consistent navigation to a single source of info.

Update 2: As of 6:00 pm on Thursday, February 21, the emergency band on the One Stop displays in the subway was still running yesterday’s message about a working fire on Queen and diversion of the 501, 510 and 511. Of course, by this morning, the fire was long past “working” and the 510 and 511 were back on route.

Update 3: As of 10:00 am on Friday, February 22, the emergency notice still claimed that there was a working fire and that the 510 and 511 services were on diversion.

If the TTC can’t even manage proper information from one emergency, how can they possibly handle bulletins to a network of transit shelters and subscription-based service alerts via text messages and email? These things don’t write themselves, and if the TTC is serious about public info, they need to actually make it someone’s job (on several shifts) to keep this sort of thing up to date.