MTA Worker Critically Injured after Being Struck by Brooklyn Train 

10 Jun, 2024 Liz Carey

                               

New York, NY (WorkersCompensation.com) – Officials said a Metropolitan Transit Authority worker in New York City was injured after he was struck by a train in downtown Brooklyn.  

According to the New York Police Department, the on-duty track worker was performing track work when he was hit by a northbound train around 12:30 in the morning on June 6. Officials said he was working as a flagger in a crew of four inspecting the rails just south of the Hoyt-Schermerhorn Streets station. Flaggers alert oncoming trains to crews working in the area, officials said.  

Police said after the accident, the train conductor immediately pulled the emergency brake and crews on the train killed the power. Police and EMS responded to treat the injured worker.  

The 64-year-old worker suffered life-threatening injuries to his face and head, officials said, and was rushed to NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue. He was in intensive care as of Thursday afternoon.  

"The employee is responsive. He opens his eyes, but that's probably the extent of his communication at this point," Demetrius Crichlow, senior vice president of New York City Transit Department of Subways, said in a statement. 

MTA said it was investigating the incident to see what went wrong.  

The incident comes just months after another MTA employee, Hilarion Joseph, was killed while he was working as a flagger and was hit by a train in Manhattan.  

Officials said in that November 2023 incident the track worker was working as part of a cleaning crew just south of the 34 Street-Herald Square station after midnight when he was hit and dragged by a slow-moving northbound D train. Officials said the train was going about 10 miles per hour when it hit Joseph and was in the midst of scheduled maintenance.  

Joseph was also taken to Bellevue Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.  

At the time, MTA said they were investigating the incident.  

"Whether there was not enough clearance, whether he stumbled, we don't know, but obviously, a flagger should under any circumstance, shouldn't be coming into contact with the train," NYC Transit President Rich Davey said. 

While there are cameras at the station, Davey said, there would not necessarily be cameras in the tunnel to provide any relevant footage about what happened.  

Officials said they were taking Joseph’s death as a time to educate workers. 

"We are taking the opportunity to refresh and retrain our employees on protocols when it comes to track safety, it’s been mentioned by a few folks that these are dangerous jobs that we ask are people to do day in and day out, that includes folks working on the tracks," Davey said. 

Prior to that an MTA worker died on the job in 2020 while evacuating a burning train after an arson fire. In 2018, a track worker was killed when he fell while cleaning and hit his head.  

"We have an inherent risk in the job because we are on the tracks doing work on the live train traffic, it doesn't get more dangerous than that," Transport Workers Union Safety Director John Chiarello. 

In February 2024, New York City transit workers caused a slowdown, bringing the morning commute to a virtual halt, in response to concerns over safety issues. Those actions came on the heels of an MTA worker being slashed by a subway rider.  

The work slowdown took place on February 29, hours after the slashing took place. Workers filled out safety forms, called the Safety Dispute Resolution Form, through their union representatives, Richard Davis, the president of Local 100 of the TWU, which caused delays as workers waited for the forms to be cleared by managers.  

The forms assure workers that the tracks are safe to operate. The complaints, some workers said, were part of a long history of complaints that the MTA, the state agency that runs the subway and bus system in the city, was not doing enough to guarantee worker safety.  

Transit workers have complained for months that the system is unsafe, especially in light of attacks on workers while on the job. Union leaders have asked for more transit officers be added to the stations. In March, Gov. Kathy Hochul increased the police presence in the subway.  

In a February news release, Davis said transit employees were concerned for their own safety.  

“We need better protection now, before we lose one of our own,” he said at the time.  


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    • Liz Carey

      Liz Carey has worked as a writer, reporter and editor for nearly 25 years. First, as an investigative reporter for Gannett and later as the Vice President of a local Chamber of Commerce, Carey has covered everything from local government to the statehouse to the aerospace industry. Her work as a reporter, as well as her work in the community, have led her to become an advocate for the working poor, as well as the small business owner.

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