(CROWN HEIGHTS, BROOKLYN) — Blood on the tracks: It’s been a routine occurrence for years in the city’s subway system. The latest case took place shortly after 10 a.m. Tuesday at the Utica Avenue station in Brooklyn.
Authorities from the 71st Precinct along with MTA police responded quickly to the scene in Crown Heights where they found a woman between the ages of 40 and 50 dead on the tracks.
She reportedly fainted off the platform, but one MTA worker on the scene told PIX 11 News that the woman was acting irrationally and was told by other straphangers to stay away from the edge. Moments later she reportedly passed out and fell to her death. Authorities quickly smothered the scene with bleach and sprinkled absorbent powder after removing the body.
In 2012, 135 people were hit by subways, which resulted in 55 deaths. Those figures, combined with the spate of subway shove deaths and Tuesday’s incident, have many questioning subway safety.
“People have to be aware of their own surroundings,” says straphanger James Vacca, who has also been the New York City Council’s transportation chairman for the past four years.
Vacca has been pushing for a public awareness campaign throughout the system that was recently launched.
Yet safer trains and awareness does not equate to the end of deaths on the tracks that see 1.6 billion riders a year.
“I think we’re seeing this because we have people with varying degree of issues. I think we’re seeing this because we have some people who are not considerate of other people and I think as a city as large as this, we have to be aware that this could happen,” Vacca said.
As for potential mechanical protective measures to be added to the system? Vacca says it would be extremely taxing to taxpayers.