National News

Dec 18, 2012 6:08 PM by NBC News

Officer rescues man after wheelchair rolls off of platform and onto train tracks

(WXIA) It started just like any other day at Atlanta's busiest MARTA train station.

Then a rider fell onto the tracks.

Senior MARTA officer Eugenio Pizarro heard a "lot of noise and commotion."

Officer Pizarro rushed downstairs to the platform of the Eastbound lane and found a man on the tracks.

Making the already dangerous situation even more precarious, the MARTA rider on the tracks was pinned under his wheelchair.

"Somehow he lost control of his wheelchair," Officer Pizarro said.

MARTA'S Surveillance video shows the rider's wheelchair lurch forward, stop and then go over onto tracks.

"At the speed, he was able to clear the third rail and land in the middle," the responding officer explained.

Officer Pizarro says the man landed face down and the heavy wheelchair was on top of him.

"My big concern was that it was a wheelchair that was about 500 pounds so I was really concerned the wheelchair crushed him on the back," he said.

Officer Pizarro and his colleagues didn't have much time.
"You've got steps on every corner but on that day it wasn't practical so I just jumped down to the track," he said.

Another officer ran to cut power to keep the next train from speeding into the station at 40 miles an hour.

Officer Pizarro reassured the 52-year-old man Atlanta Fire and EMS crews were on the way.

"I told him, 'Rescue is coming, just stay here with me,'" he explained.

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