Tuesday, June 26, 2012

How Long until Someone Falls off a Crowded Platform?


From Rob, who says he has an M.S. in safety management and "16-plus years of experience in addressing safety and health issues, dealing with a wide variety of public safety issues on a daily basis."

This was addressed to Metro customer service.
I wanted to alert you to a troubling situation on the Red Line [yesterday] morning, where my personal safety as Metrorail rider was compromised. An overcrowded Metro train experienced mechanical difficulties and was offloaded at Dupont Circle, quite possibly the smallest platform in the system.

Here is the troubling part. The escalator at the top was still operational with hundreds more passengers being forced by the moving escalator onto the already overcrowded platform.

I (and several dozen other passengers) almost were pushed off and onto tracks after the train experiencing mechanical difficulties left the station. I believe this is a very serious safety situation that Metro needs to address immediately.

I expressed my concerns, in a pretty vehement manner (as I was understandably upset when my own personal safety is threatened), to a Metrorail employee who told me he would have me arrested! (He stated I touched him, and I never did.).

I suggested that the train should have been offloaded at a larger platform, and he told me that Metro “did not know” that the train was experiencing mechanical difficulties. Say what!?!

As a 16-plus year Metrorail rider, I could tell several stations prior that the train was having mechanical problems (It was starting/stopping “herky-jerky” style.).

This situation was totally avoidable and very troubling—especially in light that the three-year anniversary of Metrorail’s worst passenger accident was just last week.
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