Frightening fall on MBTA tracks caught on camera

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September 26, 2013, 10:01 pm
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(NECN: Alysha Palumbo, Boston) - Caught on tape, an unbelievable fall – and an even more astonishing rescue -- Wednesday night just after 9 p.m. when a 33-year-old Malden man fell onto the tracks of the outbound Orange Line train at Boston’s North Station.
 
He hit his head, seemingly knocked unconscious, as people on the platform scurried about trying to figure out what to do.

"I thought it was a fight, but then again I seen the dude’s shoes on the ground, I was over there and I had to run, I didn’t care if I died at least I did something tried to save somebody’s life  instead of watching somebody die and get hit by a train," said 16-year-old Duncan Ketter of East Boston.

Duncan was across two sets of tracks on the inbound side, but he says he didn’t hesitate to jump in when he realized the man’s life might be in danger.

As two people jumped into the pit from the left, Duncan says you can see him in his yellow cap running in from the right, avoiding the third rail twice to help lift the man to the platform.
 
"My girlfriend was like what are you thinking, what are you doing, she was crying over there I was like I just had to do what I had to do," he said.

With the man safely out of harm’s way, Duncan doubled back to the other side, where he and his girlfriend continued onto her house. He says he didn’t even know until we showed him the video that the man survived.

MBTA officials say he was transported to Mass General with a minor head injury.

"I was just thinking about that dude all night, I was trying to sleep and I couldn’t sleep," Duncan said.

MBTA officials say the man and his Good Samaritan rescuers were never in any danger because another quick-thinking rider notified an Orange Line dispatcher who immediately stopped all trains in the area.

In fact they discourage all riders from taking matters into their own hands.

Duncan says he wouldn’t hesitate to do it again.

"I mean if somebody’s in danger, come on, you gotta do something, you can’t just stand there, you gotta break the rules, if somebody’s in danger you gotta break the rules, you have to break the rules to save that dude," he said.

MBTA officials say the man who fell in told them he’d had just two drinks after celebrating passing the medical boards and was waiting for the train home -- but he doesn't remember falling in.

The MBTA does have several clearly marked signs warning people to stay behind the yellow line. The T even created a "Safety Bounce" video to remind riders to stay away from the platform's edge.

Tags: Boston, Alysha Palumbo, North Station, North Station MBTA, Duncan Ketter, MBTA Safety Bounce
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