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Accident Report Detail

Safety Recommendation Report: Hazards of Moving Between Transit Railcars

Executive Summary

​On September 23, 2018, about 5:35 p.m. local time, a Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) subway train operator stopped a southbound train between the Alleghany Station and the North Philadelphia Station on the Broad Street Line when a passenger activated an emergency alert. The train dispatcher instructed the train operator to perform a ground level inspection of the train. The operator found, between the running rails about 10 feet south of the Alleghany Station platform, a child that had been struck and killed by the train. According to witness statements provided to SEPTA officials, the child, a 7-year-old boy, was walking through the end-of-railcar doors from car 516 to car 536, when he fell between the railcars as the train moved out of the Alleghany Station.

Probable Cause

​Safety Recommendations

As a result of this investigation, the National Transportation Safety Board makes the following safety recommendations:

To the Federal Transit Administration:

  • Use your authority under Title 49 United States Code Part 5329 to develop standards for safety messaging for end-of-railcar doors, including appropriate sign location, text, and symbols to be placed on rolling stock. (R-19-39)
  • Once the messaging standards are successfully developed, use your authority under Title 49 Code of Federal Regulations 670.25 to immediately issue a general directive that would require all rail transit agencies to implement those standards on applicable rolling stock. (R-19-40)

Accident Location: Philadelphia , PA USA  
Accident Date: 9/23/2018
Accident ID: RRD18FR011

Date Adopted: 8/28/2019
NTSB Number: RSR1901
NTIS Number:  

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