PHILADELPHIA, PA (KYW/CNN) - A Pennsylvania woman is lucky to be alive after falling onto train tracks and hit the line's electrified rail.
The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) platform on the Broad Street line was active at midday until a commuter, a woman in tan pants and seemingly unstable on her feet, fell on the tracks, coming into contact with the electrified third rail.
"Not too many people live after coming in contact with the third rail. That is down there to run a major train operation and it is certainly not meant to be touched by a human body. She's lucky," said SEPTA police chief Tom Nestel.
Commuter Francine Johnson witnessed the whole incident.
"She kept leaning over; she leaned back. The second time, she leaned over again. The third time, looked over, she was just on the tracks. She's laying there. I ran upstairs, ran up and banged on the thing and told the lady. They turned it off. She laying for maybe, like, a minute or so...like, and just like...shaking," Johnson said.
Francine was among the many bystanders on the platform who went for help. "Everybody on that platform either ran for help or ran up to the cashier to notify SEPTA of what was occurring," she said.
SEPTA officials are commending the first responders. The victim fell at 1:18 p.m., and emergency officials had her on a stretcher and headed to the hospital at 1:34...just sixteen minutes later.
"People have to be aware of what they're doing in our system, and this is a tragedy when someone doesn't pay attention," Chief Nestel said.