Terrifying Moment Hero NYPD Officers Pull Fallen Stranger From Subway Tracks to Safety
“They immediately jumped into action.”
It's one of the scariest scenarios imaginable for the average commuter—being stuck on train tracks with no help, and in danger of being severely injured by an incoming train. This was the scenario for a passenger in Brooklyn, NYC, when he fell onto the tracks at Grant Avenue station and was unable to pull himself back up onto the platform again. Luckily two NYPD officers came to his rescue, hoisting him back up to safety—and the whole thing was captured on body cam footage. Here's what happened and what the police had to say.
Body cam footage posted online by NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell shows the two officers racing down the platform toward the passenger in distress. Other passengers were standing over the man, clearly alarmed and unable to help. With each officer grabbing one of the man's arms, they pull him back up on the platform again.
Commissioner Sewell praised the actions of his officers via a Twitter post, where he shared the body cam footage. "Strategically deployed @NYPD75Pct officers were on the platform in Brooklyn's Grant Ave train station when a straphanger fell onto the tracks. They immediately jumped into action, pulling the man to safety."
Responses to the video were full of kudos for the two officers. "Great response," one commenter said. "Well done!" said another. "Tragedy averted. Thank you!" said a third. So what happens if you fall onto the tracks? Here is what experts say is the best way to handle the situation.
Falling onto train tracks is scary but survivable. Avoid the third rail, which can cause electrocution. Most platforms have ladders on each side, find them and climb up. If a train is coming at a far distance, try signaling to it. "If you have a flashlight or anything reflective, wave it above your head from left to right," a track worker tells the Daily News. "It means stop. Train operators will see that and know what to do." Unfortunately this doesn't work if the train is automated.
Another option the anonymous source advises is this: "If you lay down flat between the two rails where the trains run, turn your head to the side, the train will pass right over you," the track worker says. "There's enough clearance between that space, called the trough, and the bottom of a train." "Listen, you're never going to outrun a train," an MTA worker says. "You should never go on the tracks. And if you're pushed, you can either lay under the train and suck it in — or do your damn best to get back onto the platform quickly."
New York City's subway system is the most extensive rapid transit system in the United States and one of the busiest and most iconic in the world. The subway is operated by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) and includes 472 stations and over 842 miles of track. It's the primary mode of transportation for millions of New Yorkers and tourists, with an average of 5.6 million rides taken each weekday.
The subway first opened in 1904, making it one of the oldest in the world. Despite its age and heavy usage, the subway has undergone numerous renovations and upgrades in recent years, including the installation of new subway cars and the implementation of a modern fare payment system.