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Man gets in front of Orange Line train at Mass. Ave.; dies

Socially distanced Orange Line riders wait for a bus at Jackson

Socially distanced Orange Line riders wait for a bus at Jackson. Photo by La Bibliotequetress.

A man was hit and killed by an outbound Orange Line train at Massachusetts Avenue shortly before 2:30 p.m.

The man "intentionally placed himself in front of an incoming train," Transit Police say.

Orange Line service was replaced by buses between North Station and Jackson Square. Riders also jammed onto the Green Line.

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Comments

How bad must it be to end it all this way? :(

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Voting closed 51

There's a sense of romanticism and geographic nostalgia... if nothing else

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The one I really feel badly for is the driver of the train. He/She/They have to live with it for the rest of their lives, just for doing a job we need them to do. I'm sure they won't be sleeping well for a while. I hope the T offers good counsellors.

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Voting closed 99

I've read numerous times that being at the controls when your train strikes a suicidal person usually does lasting psychological damage.

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I''ve heard (from people supposedly in the business) that the directive for train drivers when someone is on the tracks like that is - brakes, horn, turn away from the window & close your eyes.

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braking is rarely used, especially if the train is going at a higher speed. This is because nornal braking will not lessen the impact significantly, and sudden (i.e.emergency) braking could injure the passengers.

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Over 40 years I have twice been on an MBTA subway train that struck a person who jumped. In both cases the motorperson dumped the train into emergency brake and blew the air horn. When it happened the second time I quickly knew what was going on based on the experience the first time.

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Voting closed 34

And the speed here?

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Voting closed 13

turn away from the window & close your eyes.

Sure. I'd like to see that procedure in writing.

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Voting closed 14

Wow. What's your problem?

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I guess my problem is, I find it hard to believe that that's a procedure for a train that's in operation. I suppose the next step is to say, Calgon take me away. Ludacris.

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Voting closed 11

Train driver/operator/motorman.
Train - as in steering around "obstacle" is not an option.
So, if they're doing all the things they CAN do - emergency braking to stop ASAP and emergency horn/bells/lights/whistles to alert anyone who might heed; and no further harm can come by NOT watching - why do you think procedure would call for them to watch as another human being is pulped on the windshield two feet in front of them?
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Witnessing stuff like that leaves its own trauma.

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Voting closed 12

Turn away from the window & close your eyes. sure, don't worry about operating the train.

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It was the drivers 4th official day. Horrible.

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And if all this isn’t enough for the train operator, they are sent for a post accident drug and alcohol test at the MBTA medical clinic.

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Voting closed 19

I just got called by a close friend, a former roommate while living in the Boston area, who informed me that our close friend had walked from his home and placed himself on the tracks, and by committing suicide, ended a decades long battle with depression. Though I knew about the times he had been an inpatient at psych wards and I knew about his multiple electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) sessions, which I now know where very unpleasant for him... I didnt truly or fully appreciate the pain he must have been in. I too suffer from depression and understand that suicide or other forms of self harm, like cutting, happens when the pain is so so severe that it is seen as the only remedy. He was a sensitive man and I feel sure that he was in such a dark place that he didnt, couldn't think of the impact his action would have on others, like the train conductor or his friends who are now finding out. Also the location he chose was due to the proximity to his home - it had nothing to do with Romanticism (which someone else suggested in the comments. Again, he had lost touch with that level of thinking. And I must add that suggestion, though maybe not intended, I feel is insensitive to the serious situation). I knew my friend since 1983 and he was a foundation stone in my world and I will miss him so much.

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Voting closed 19

for the loss of your friend. I trust that he could not think beyond his own pain when this occurred.

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I believe I know who this person was but just want to confirm. Will you reach out? Was his first name Justin by chance?

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.... in so much pain they don’t have the mental capacity to consider how their actions will affect others.

I have sympathy for both the driver and the suicide. And for their friends and families and anyone on the platform.

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Baaad Times!! I also suffer from depression and have been waiting over 2 months to get an urgent appointment for a psychologist i haven't heard from them and I've been telling my theripist i was going to jump in front of a train!!! Not even close to enough help!! They would rather incarcerate you! I WILL kill myself before i would do another day in jail.Ive been nothing but tortured my whole life. Welcome to America

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I am so sorry to hear this, Tim. I hope you can hang in there and get help. I know it’s hard to hear, but perhaps things will improve for you in the next days. Sometimes they do. I dare say they usually do! Give it a chance, please. Your life is worth so much.

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Voting closed 52

Tim, there is help available. Try https://samaritanshope.org/ (samaritanshope dot org). You can text or call for free, and they might be able to help with a local psychiatrist.

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You're right, the US has dreadful access to mental health assistance.

For anyone lucky enough to be employed right now (or have a housemate that is), many larger employers offer free counseling sessions through an Employee Assistance Program, aka EAP. It's usually open to anyone you live with, including roommates, parents, partners, etc., so maybe something to look into.

Some additional resources:
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Call 800-273-TALK (8255)
National Alliance on Mental Illness Helpline: 800-950-NAMI
Crisis Text Line: Text NAMI to 741-741
Free chat and support available 24/7 at 7 Cups: https://www.7cups.com/

This year has been particularly difficult for so many people, but suicide is a permanent solution to a hopefully temporary issue or difficult mental state. You are worthwhile ♥

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Have you seen how bad this problem is in Japan right now? I know they have always had a problem with suicide, but even for them it is extreme.

The problems people are facing right now isn't an argument over masks, or testing, or Trump, or whatever else is in the news. Excluding the economic hopelessness for a moment, people need the comfort of other people. We are a social animal. People were already just barely keeping it together and now there are threats of locking us in our rooms until the adults are good and ready to let us out while they go to the French Laundry or fly to Mexico with the wedding party.

Some people are done for entirely different reasons...but I wouldn't be surprised if we become a little like Japan and there are enough people who just give up on this $hit and end it all. And in greater numbers in the under 50 contingent than die from Covid. Yes, I'm saying in the next 12 months we'll see more suicide in the US under 50 than Covid death, when you include overdoses. And all they have to offer us is wear a mask and stay home. I never understood why anyone puts any faith at all in the aggrandizing self-important selfish egotistical SOB's who run for office and believe they have better answers for our lives than we do because they managed to defeat another crap bag pol like themselves.

Look at the Deer Island poop. Maybe we should mask both ends?

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Not everyone is so needy. A lot of introverts are actually enjoying the time to themselves.

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Japan, a place with a famous pre-existing tendency towards suicide, has seen a spike. Queensland, AU has not. Neither has British Columbia, Canada. Some areas in the United States (Fresno, CA; Los Alamos; parts if Illinois) and sub-populations (members of the military, high school students) have seen spikes, while others have seen declines. There's been a national spike in traditional risk factors for suicide but so far it has not translated into actual deaths.

It's very important that we pay attention to this issue, but it's also important to understand what the data is saying. We should be devoting extra resources to the people and places that are committing suicide at higher rate. That absolutely does not mean we should back off necessary and effective public health measures for the people and places that are not. Different things are different.

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... consider that we all die eventually so your suffering will surely end someday. But if you end it now you lose the chance your life might get less painful, maybe bearable and possibly even enjoyable. If you can hang on, try to. Wishing you the best!

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We’re entering the saddest time of the year even under normal circumstances. Check on your loved ones. Check on yourself. Peace and love.

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