Hogg's Hollow Disaster National Historic Event

Toronto, Ontario
Address : Toronto, Ontario

Recognition Statute: Historic Sites and Monuments Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. H-4)
Designation Date: 2011-07-19
  • 1960 to 1960 (Significant)

Other Name(s):
  • Hogg's Hollow Disaster  (Designation Name)
Research Report Number: 2009-050, 2008-073

Importance: Raised sensitivity and galvanized public attention to the broad problem of workplace safety and immigrant exploitation in the construction industry


Existing plaque: Inside of the York Mills Subway Station,near the memorial quilt installation “Breaking Ground: The Hogg’s Hollow Disaster 1960”, Toronto, Ontario

On 17 March 1960, workers installing a water main under the Don River at Hogg’s Hollow became trapped by fire and an explosion. Pasquale Allegrezza, Giovanni Carriglio, Giovanni Fusillo, and Alessandro and Guido Mantella died. A brutal combination of carbon monoxide poisoning and drowning in silt and water took their lives. In response, Italian-Canadian workers demanded safer working conditions and an end to the exploitation of immigrant labourers. A series of strikes led to a royal commission investigating construction industry practices, contributing to improvements to labour legislation in Ontario.