Monthly Archives: April 2015

STM institutes new corpse storage policy to keep trains running after metro suicides

Responding to client frustration at being delayed an hour or more after some depressed person throws himself in front of a speeding metro train to end his life, the STM is testing out a new policy to dramatically cut down on delays caused by such incidents.

Under the old policy, the affected metro line would immediately come to a stop, emergency services personnel would be dispatched to the scene, and they would conduct an investigation while the station was evacuated. The driver would be treated for shock, the body would be carefully and respectfully removed, the area cleaned, and service would resume.

“We found that simply took too long,” the transit agency said in a statement. “So we’re finding ways to innovate and cut down on delays that frustrate users.”

As part of the new policy, once the the freshly deceased corpse will simply be pushed to the side of the track, underneath the platform of the station, to be picked up during overnight cleaning. A sheet would be left over the body so people on the opposing platform don’t gawk, and a surveillance camera would monitor the body to ensure it was not tampered with before police arrive to investigate the scene.

“Our simulations show this method cuts service interruptions down to about 10 minutes,” the STM said. “We’re looking forward to seeing the new system in action.”

Fast, efficient service is the top priority of any transit agency, and it’s nice to see this one is finding a way to deal with all-too-common incidents that cause serious inconveniences for others.

Pierre Karl Péladeau names Julie Snyder as trustee of his blind trust

After months of talking about it, Parti Québécois MNA and leadership candidate Pierre Karl Péladeau has put in place the blind trust he has promised to rid him of any conflicts of interest that may come up because of his ownership of Quebecor. And he has appointed Quebec TV star and producer Julie Snyder as its trustee.

“Julie knows the Quebec media industry very well, and we have a great working relationship,” Péladeau explained to the media. “She understands my commitment to keep these assets in Quebec hands and I have no doubt she will be a great manager of my assets.”

Snyder and Péladeau have a history together: He once made a cameo on her game show Le Banquier.

While Snyder has a lot of experience in the media, she’s not a banker. She said she would leave the jobs of managing a large corporation to the people already in place, and she would focus on managing “the media side” including TVA and the Journal de Montréal. And while she will sit on the editorial board of each, she said she has complete confidence in the editorial teams and no one should expect to see major changes now that she’s in charge.

Péladeau is not legally obligated to put his assets in a blind trust unless he becomes a member of cabinet, but he promised to do so anyway if he becomes leader of the opposition.

Postmedia to launch Montreal Sun newspaper

With the acquisition of Sun Media approved, my employer Postmedia has already announced plans for expansion of the dead-tree newspaper chain, and is hiring staff to create a Montreal edition of the Toronto/Ottawa/Calgary/Winnipeg/Edmonton Sun.

The tabloid would complement rather than compete against the Montreal Gazette, much like the Sun tabloids and Postmedia broadsheets complement each other. The Gazette would continue to have award-winning serious journalism, while the Sun would have the Sun staples that readers in other major cities have had for years: right-wing columnists, lots of sports, and the Sunshine Girl.

Postmedia says the new paper should launch some time in the fall.

Radio-Canada appoints Gérald Tremblay as host of Montreal morning show

Former Montreal mayor Gérald Tremblay is joining the ranks of former politicians who become media personalities.

It was just announced on air that Tremblay will be the new host of Radio-Canada’s Montreal morning radio show C’est pas trop tôt, starting this fall. Tremblay replaces Marie-France Bazzo, who left the show over a disagreement with management.

Tremblay hasn’t been seen much since he stepped down as mayor on Nov. 5, 2012. But in an interview he expressed an interest in returning to public life.

“I hope to dig deep into the issues and expose the truth about the important problems of our society,” he said. “I’m going to ask the tough questions, and I won’t let anything get by me.”

Other Quebec politicians who jumped into the broadcasting game include former ADQ leader Mario Dumont and former Liberal cabinet minister Nathalie Normandeau.