A man plowed a white rental van into a
crowd of pedestrians in the center of
Canada's biggest city Toronto on Monday,
police said, with several people feared
Police said up to 10 people were struck,
adding they could not confirm any deaths,
but local media reported at least four
fatalities in the incident.
Television images showed the man and a
police officer facing off, their guns drawn.
The suspect eventually surrendered his
weapon and was taken into custody.
Vehicle attacks have been carried out to
deadly effect by extremists in a number of
capitals and major cities, including London,
Paris, New York and Nice, but the motive for
Monday's incident was not yet clear.
"Update: unknown of extent of injuries,
possible 8 - 10 pedestrians struck," Toronto
police wrote on Twitter.
Police then said it was "too early to
confirm the number of pedestrians struck or
At least one body was seen covered at the
scene. At least seven patients were being
treated at the Sunnybrook Health Sciences
Centre, the facility said on Twitter.
- 'Really fast' -
Officers were called to the scene -- on
Yonge Street at the corner with Finch Avenue
-- at 1:27 pm (1727 GMT), police said.
A white rental van with a dented front
bumper was stopped on the sidewalk of a
major intersection, surrounded by police
"He was going really fast," witness Alex
Shaker told CTV television.
"All I could see was just people one by one
getting knocked out, knocked out, one by
one," Shaker said. "There are so many people
lying down on the streets."
Another witness, Jamie Eopni, told local
Toronto television station CP24: "It was
crashing into everything. It destroyed a
bench. If anybody was on that street, they
would have been hit on the sidewalk."
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told
the House of Commons: "Our hearts go to
"We are going to have more to learn and more
to say in the coming hours," he added.
- 'It's frightening' -
The incident occurred as Toronto was hosting
foreign and public security ministers from
the G7 leading industrialized nations --
Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy,
Japan and the United States.
Authorities have not yet stated what the
driver's motives may have been.
"We have no information on that point and we
need to wait until there's information
before we comment... I will respect the
expertise of the security officials,"
Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne told
reporters when asked if the incident was
"We are all unsettled and very disturbed by
a situation like this, it's impossible not
to be -- it's frightening."
AFP / Sabrina BLANCHARD
Map locating Toronto in Canada where a van
ran over pedestrians
Canada has only rarely been the scene of
In October, a man stabbed a police officer
in the western city of Edmonton before
slamming his van into a group of
pedestrians, injuring four people.
And in Quebec in October 2014, a Canadian
man ran over two soldiers in a parking lot
with his car, killing one of them. The
driver was shot dead by police when he
attacked them with a knife.
In March 2016, a Canadian who claimed to
have radical Islamist sympathies attacked
two soldiers at a military recruitment
center in Toronto.