subway doomed

Sometimes, at The Gloss, we just like to do things that are servicey, and if you live anywhere with a subway system one of your worst fears is probably being pushed/falling into the subway. Rightly so. Because it is the most terrifying thing imaginable. But, despite what this insane NY Post cover says, you will not necessarily be “doomed.” Here are some tips on how to survive the subway:

Avoid falling altogether:

Stop doing that thing where you stand at the very edge of the platform and crane your neck like a bird to see the subway coming. The MTA’s top piece of advice, which sounds self explanatory, is that you should stand away from the edge of the platform. Of course, no one does this, because we all want to be the first person on the train. At the very least, stand behind the clearly marked yellow line on the tracks.


If you do fall into the tracks:

DO NOT necessarily lie down. One common piece of advice is that you should lie down because many trains have enough clearence to clear a body. This is largely because Weslety Autrey, the subway hero, saved a man who had fallen into the subway by pushing him into the subway drainage ditch and shielding the man’s body with his own (two cars passed over them and left grease on them, but did not kill them). This is true of some subway lines, but not all! Instead, a subway conductor says:

The best thing you can do is run as far down the platform as you can (in the opposite direction from where the train enters the station) and wave your arms frantically to get the train operator and passenger’s attention. Believe me, the passengers WILL be doing the exact same thing, as nobody wants to see you get run over and their train get delayed. If you can get to the far end of the platform, it gives the train more room to stop, and there is a ladder at the end of each platform where you can climb back up — do NOT try to climb up from where you are. So many people have been killed trying to jump back up rather than getting away from the entrance end of the station.

So. Don’t lie down. And don’t try to climb up onto the platform. Run directly to the end of the platform (away from the train) and try to use the ladder if the train is not immediately approaching. If the train is approaching wave your arms wildly.

If you see someone fall, here is how you help

According to the MTA’s Charles Seaton:

The one thing we do encourage is that customers stand back from the edge of the platform. If they see someone else fall, they can inform the station agent, use the HelpPoint (if the station is so equipped) to communicate an emergency, or a Customer Intercom.

So, don’t jump in after them and try to be a hero. If you have no idea what help point looks like – I didn’t! – check out a photo of it from the MTA here. They’re not at all subway stops yet, but, if you see a glowing blue neon thing in your subway, and you see someone get pushed, run towards it, not them.