Elmer Frisby

Toronto, d. 17.July.1920, killed by car on the job


Motorman Not Blamed for Cyclist’s Death
Toronto Star, July 24, 1920
Witnesses describe scene of accident on Yonge St. as veritable death trap
North Toronto, July 24 – Coroner Dr. G. G. Rowe’s jury last night returned a verdict to the effect that the death of Elmer Frisby, aged 14, was accidental and that no blame could be attached to the motorman of a Metropolitan streetcar with which deceased’s bicycle collided near Stop 18, North Yonge Street on July 17. Frisby was a messenger boy at a meat store.
A.B. Cairns, the motorman testified that he saw the boy riding south on Yonge Street with one hand on the handlebar and a package of meat in the other hand. When the car caught up with the boy, the latter swerved and appeared to be drawn in under the trolley. Witness reversed the controller and applied the brakes and pulled up within a distance of 23 feet. He was going about 10 miles an hour. The wheels of the car had not run over the boy who was killed by the force of the impact with the side of the car.
Foster Robbins, conductor, corroborated.
Edwin Donnelly, a resident of North Toronto, declared that the spot where the accident occurred was a veritable death trap. Ditches, he said ran under and across the car tracks at regular intervals. In his opinion, the bicycle struck of these ditches throwing Frisby to the ground. Donnelly said that the city had requested for a long time been requested to assist in repaving the roadway but without result.
W.G. Ellis, a jeweler agreed that the place was a deathtrap.
Detective McIntosh stated that on examination of the bicycle he found the cones in the front wheel loose, which would cause it to swerve considerably. He also thought that the weight of the heavy metal basket affixed to the handlebars might have caused the wheels to swerve.
F.C. Barnett, the boy’s employer declared the wheel had been overhauled on the day preceding the fatality.