10 November 2015

Saturday evening, I arrived quite early for a social engagement at One Mile House on Delancey Street on the Lower East Side and was standing in front of the venue wondering what my next step should be. Should I wait there or try to find something else to do in the meantime?

While I stood there, about ten emergency vehicles—police cars, ambulances and fire trucks—pulled up alongside me with their sirens wailing, and EMTs, fire fighters and police officers filed into the Bowery subway station. A little while later, a police officer emerged with a loudly crying witness to whatever it was that had happened in there. As a crowd gathered, people were helping to translate her testimony from Chinese for the policeman as well as apparently helping her contact some family members on her telephone. I overheard what some passengers and some emergency workers were saying, and it turns out that her companion was struck by an arriving train as he stood on the platform.

Soon afterward, the injured passenger was brought out on a spine board to a wheeled stretcher that was waiting atop the stairs and rushed to an ambulance. I later learned that he had been wedged between the train and the platform and that his fellow passengers were pushing on the train trying to free him and that he later died at hospital.

• Ben Kochman and Ryan Sit, “Straphangers heave subway car off Queens man trapped, killed by J train,” Daily News, 9 Nov. 2015.
• Linda Adams, Twitter, 7 Nov. 2015.
• New York City Transit Authority, Twitter, 7 Nov. 2015.

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