ACAT Meeting - December 13, 2012

Meeting Info

Date:Thursday, December 13, 2012
Location:1900 Yonge Street, 7th Floor Boardroom
Meeting No:259
  • Agenda
  • Meeting Minutes

Agenda is not available for this meeting.
Please check the meeting minutes for meeting details.

Agenda is not available for this meeting.
Please check the meeting minutes for meeting details.

Agenda is not available for this meeting.
Please check the meeting minutes for meeting details.

Agenda is not available for this meeting.
Please check the meeting minutes for meeting details.


  • Valdo Tammark, Chair
  • Scott McArthur, Co-Vice Chair
  • Brayan Bratanov, Co-Vice Chair
  • Mazin Aribi
  • Debbie Gillespie
  • Penny Lamy
  • Angela Marley
  • Lynn McCormick
  • Angela Rebeiro
  • Howard Wax


  • Lori March
  • Anna Noviss
  • Carol Anne Monet
  • William Castor via teleconference

Pool Member

  • Marian McDonell

Invited Guest

Craig Nicol (former member)

TTC Representatives

  • Tom McPherson
  • Ross Visconti
  • Janet O'Sullivan
  • Bill Dawson
  • David Dixon
  • Orest Kobylansky
  • Alex Grncarovski


  • Andy Byford
  • David Dixon
  • Thomas Hartley
  • Sameh Ghaly
  • Vince Rodo 
  • Mitch Stambler 
  • Jim Teeple 
  • Chris Upfold
  • TTC Commissioners

NOTE: The November 2012 ACAT Meeting was cancelled due to the elevators not working in the 1900 Yonge Street building.

NOTE: The November 2012 ACAT Meeting was cancelled due to the elevators not working in the 1900 Yonge Street building.

1. Call to Order / Attendance

Valdo Tammark, Chair, called the meeting to order at 1:04 p.m. and attendance was taken.

2. Declaration of Conflict of Interest


3. Approval of Agenda

On motion by Howard Wax and seconded by Mazin Aribi, ACAT reviewed and approved the Agenda.

4. Presentation and Introduction of the 2013 ACAT members

Tom McPherson introduced the new members: Susan Davidson, Fay Fuerst, Craig Nicol, Tim Rose, Sam Savona, and Adam Cohoon, and the three new pool members: Sarah Adams, Judy Berger, and Robert Muzzy.

Mr. McPherson thanked the outgoing ACAT members.

The new members gave a brief introduction of themselves.

5. Review and Approval of October 25, 2012 Minutes

On motion by Howard Wax and seconded by Brayan Bratanov, ACAT reviewed and approved the Minutes with the following changes:

  • Page 8, item #8, number 1: add “mobility” before instances of the word “device.”
  • Page 11, pp 8: remove “The commission and...” to “...persons with devices."

6. Business Arising Out of Minutes/Outstanding Items

Penny Lamy gave an update on the Fair Fares issue. She has had a number of consultations with people and various options are coming forward, but each option has its own ramifications. Ms. Lamy spoke with Tom McPherson who will facilitate discussions regarding financial data.

ACAT members will receive a copy of the report before any action takes place. This item will be added to the ACAT Outstanding Items list.

7. Deputation


8. Rocket Door Chimes

Presented by William Castor and invited guest Craig Nicol.

DRS had been monitoring a dangerous situation since the inception of the Rocket Trains which is the missing chime at every door that has been on every other train. The chime is to assist visually impaired customers to locate the doors of the subway train.

In addition to the door chime issue, the Rocket Train is silent compared to original trains. Customers who are visually impaired have been left standing with no way of identifying if a train is waiting there. Because there is no chime for door location, customers with visual impairments are required to shoreline along the train, which is unsafe and possible injuries could occur. Vehicle Engineering has promised a solution for the chime issue, the concession of one door with a chime per train car. The Committee was advised that meetings keep getting scheduled but the prototype review meeting has been pushed back three times since October. DRS requests that ACAT send a letter to Vehicle Engineering to resolve the issue.

Craig Nicol added that this issue has been ongoing from March, when it was first noted, and the single chime solution was presented in June. There was an incident where a person with visual impairment fell between two cars, which may have been prevented if there were door chimes.

Debbie Gillespie pointed out that the chimes were specified in the design of the older trains, but they did not get carried over to the Rocket Trains, so there was an oversight in not following the original specifications.

Valdo Tammark explained that this issue was brought up with the CEO and Chair of the Commission, who are taking it very seriously.

David Dixon, Chief Operating Officer, stated that there was a meeting with Bombardier regarding this issue to discuss the requirements of the door chimes as well as other Rocket Train issues. There is a commitment from Bombardier that all issues will be brought up and addressed. Another meeting will be held in February, 2013.

Bill Dawson also brought forward that a meeting will be held between Vehicle Engineering and DRS on January 16, 2013, to review prototype solutions for both the inter-car barrier and the chimes. A commitment has been made by Vehicle Engineering to show what would be required to have a chime at every door.

David Dixon assured ACAT that, once a solution has been established, it will be fitted on every Rocket Train.

Debbie Gillespie also brought forward the issue that the A/C on the trains is causing a problem to customers with visual impairment. When the train is idle, these customers cannot locate the doors quickly enough to board the train. This is stressful for customers who are visually impaired as they are not focusing on mobility technique because they are hurrying to find the doors.

ACAT decided to wait until the January 16, 2013 meeting. If this meeting is cancelled again, the ACAT Chair will write a letter to Vehicle Engineering requesting a resolution for this issue.

On motion by Howard Wax and seconded by Mazin Aribi, ACAT will send an invitation to the TTC Chair and CEO to attend the January 16, 2013 testing of the chime solution.

9. Subcommittee Reports and Updates

Service Planning Subcommittee (SPS) - Anna Noviss, Chair

Presented by Bill Dawson on behalf of Anna Noviss, SPS Chair.

SPS worked on the Public Forum comments. They were successfully finalized and three results have come out of this:

  1. All information on the Public Forum comments, both detailed and summarized, have gone to the TTC Managers responsible.
  2. The Forum comment package has gone to the chairs of the ACAT Subcommittees with SPS input about which comment falls into which Subcommittee and priorities.
  3. A high level summary of questions and answers was put up on the website last Friday, December 7, 2012, including major comments and responses.

Mazin Aribi had two comments on the website: the 'T' in ACAT should be 'transit,' not 'transportation,' and the quotes from the comment forms should be italicized, as specified in the preamble.

Design Review Subcommittee (DRS) – William Castor, Chair

Three DRS meetings were held in November (November 7, 21, and 28) and one in December (December 5).

DRS reviewed the Legacy Line and sidewalk curb cuts, Donlands and Coxwell Easier Access Phase 3 (EA3) updates, and performed site visits for pavement treatments at Shuter and Victoria.

In December, DRS summarized and submitted their report regarding the site visits for the City of Toronto.

DRS also met with Vehicle Engineering regarding the inter-car bungee cords and made recommendations, with the goal of preventing more falls. DRS reviewed Ossington EA3, which is ready to go out for tender, and is developing tactile signage standards for station bus bays.

Communications Subcommittee (CS) - Howard Wax, Chair

A meeting was held on November 2, 2012, which was chaired by Valdo Tammark. The final minutes will be provided at the next ACAT meeting in 2013.

Wheel-Trans Operations Subcommittee (WTOS)

A meeting was held on November 22, 2012 and the following items were discussed:

  • Review and approval of June 14, 2012 minutes.
  • Service Integration Pilot Update - WT held a Focus Group regarding helping customers to use conventional service.
  • Scheduling System Update - Improved scheduling as a result of the AVL System integration.
  • Service Improvements including:
    - 24-hour service beginning January 1, 2013
    - Call-outs for next day's pick-ups should be completed by 10:00 p.m.
    - Online Booking - customers will be able to put in new addresses based on postal codes.
  • New Business including:
    - City Hall Wheel Trans Pick-up Location closure.
    - Handling Customers whose Eligibility is questioned - Please report questionable riders to Wheel-Trans Customer Service
    - Idea to put service alerts for elevator, bus, and subway on WT telephone lines.
    - Mobility Device Sizes and communication with the OT community.

The next meeting was requested to be held at the Commissioners Street Office.

10. Customer Liaison Panel (CLP) Update – Mazin Aribi

On Wednesday, November 14, 2012, CLP had their fifth and final meeting for 2012 at the TTC Head Office from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Since Chris Upfold was unable to attend, Roman Muetz, Head of Customer Service Centre, chaired the meeting. Also in attendance were Haroon Nuri of the Elevating Devices Department and Bruno Papa, Customer Development Analyst and new assistant/secretary to Chris Upfold.

Items Discussed:

  • Wayfinding signs and maps with the following points:
    - Wayfinding signs at interchange stations
    - 3D Station maps
    - Signage related to Construction/Maintenance projects
    - The Union's recent ad campaign.
  • A presentation about escalator and elevator maintenance was given by Haroon Nuri, followed by questions and answers. Some points that were discussed were:
    - Time of day when maintenance is performed and why.
    - The location of signs related to the status of station elevators/escalators.
    - Reasons why an escalator/elevator would require maintenance: emergency work, preventative work, and unit overhaul. 
    - Communication about elevator/escalator status via the website ( and the Lift Line.
    - Suggestion to have information on accessible alternatives at Collector Booths, e.g. pamphlets.
    - Elevator/escalator manufacturers.
  • A presentation about the TTC's complaints handling process was given by Roman Muetz, followed by questions and answers. Some points that were discussed were:
    - Real time Twitter monitoring.
    - Message while waiting in the Customer Service telephone queue. A suggestion was made to have a message informing customers of the other options they have to communicate with Customer Service such as the web and Twitter.
    - Record keeping of accessibility complaints.

Next year’s meeting schedule will be the same format as last year’s, which is on the second Wednesday of every month except in August and December.

No Town Hall Meetings are scheduled for 2013 as of yet.

As of now, CLP meetings are not open to the public.

11. Report on Commission Meeting and Accessibility Matters

Presented by Valdo Tammark, Chair.

The November meeting introduced four citizens of the public appointed as members of the Commission. The TTC Vice-Chair will always be a person from the public.

12. Report on ACAT Quarterly Executive Meeting with TTC Chair and CEO

At the Quarterly Executive meeting, the topics discussed included Metrolinx and the work that DRS did on visiting the LRV mock-up. It was mentioned that, when Metrolinx had their Public Forum/Open House, Metrolinx staff were happy to see the ACAT members who attended.

Other topics discussed included the chime testing solution, the work on Roncesvalles about bike lanes and LRV platforms, and how City furniture keeps popping up without any formula.

Valdo Tammark also brought up the deputation given by Mr. Alan Yule at the September 26, 2012 ACAT meeting, regarding using blue-coloured seats to designate multi-use and priority seating on buses. Mr. Tammark stated that ACAT supported this idea. The Chair and TTC CEO are on board with this idea as well, and discussed changing the priority seating to blue as they wear out.

Also discussed was the issue of a policy that was created long ago when bus drivers were not allowed to touch customer fares. An issue arises when a customer who wants to pay but could not reach the fare box and the driver would not take the fare. The Chair and CEO do not think the policy should be retained.

Mr. Tammark also raised the information that the Metro newspaper publishes about the TTC. He suggested that they put in a section for tips to educate riders in helping with faster loading and unloading, for people using mobility devices. Information to help riders know what to do on buses, like folding seats, could also be included.

Mr. Tammark reported that he welcomes input from people who use mobility devices on buses and the subway that might make their life easier, and what able-bodied people can do to make travelling on conventional transit easier for everyone. The information received will be forwarded to the Communications Subcommittee for review and then passed on to Brad Ross.

13. Review of Correspondence

The Chair read out a thank you card from a customer to ACAT and Wheel-Trans.

14. Other/New Business

Mazin Aribi brought forward an issue where a response was made by the TTC to a question at the June Town Hall meeting and posted it on the website. The question was if a customer would need to give up their seat to a disabled/elderly/pregnant person and the response provided was weak and unclear.

Mr. Aribi recommends that the TTC review Bylaw #1, which refers to these instances, and rewrite the response. Angela Marley also had feedback regarding this response and wrote a personal response to the TTC Communications and Customer Service, copying and pasting from the Bylaw and clarifying the difference between priority and courtesy seating.

Mr. Aribi and Ms. Marley request that this issue be placed on the agenda for the next ACAT meeting, to clarify ACAT's stance on the issue, to clarify the rights and responsibilities of TTC customers.

Debbie Gillespie mentioned that there is little consistency on whether the Bus Operators will tell her if the bus is uncomfortably full. This information is very helpful for customers who are visually impaired.

Howard Wax brought forward an ongoing situation where it may be specified in the ACAT Terms of Reference that ACAT pool members receive an ACAT pass to allow them to attend their required meetings. Tom McPherson and Penny Lamy stated that they would look into this.

15. ACAT Executive Nominations – January 17, 2013

A meeting will take place on January 17, 2013 for the election of the ACAT Executive. This is not a public meeting.

16. Next Meeting

The next meeting of ACAT will be held on Thursday, January 31, 2013, in the 7th Floor Boardroom, 1900 Yonge Street.

17. Adjournment

On motion by Mr. Brayan Bratanov and seconded by Mr. Howard Wax, the meeting was adjourned at 2:42 p.m.

Janet Wright
Recording Secretary

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