Suicide The Leading Cause Of Subway Deaths

In what comes as no surprise to me & I am sure many others, a report obtained by the New York Post shows that suicide is the leading cause of NYC Subway deaths. The subway which was done by the MTA shows that 51% of deaths between 2010 & 2012 on the subway were the result of suicide. Gary Buiso & Isabel Vincent of the New York Post have more:

Suicide by subway is the leading cause of straphanger deaths — representing 51 percent of all fatalities, an analysis of three years of MTA data shows.

And with 57 percent of all rail deaths this year — 16 of 28 — chalked up to suicide, 2013 remains on a grim pace.

From 2010 to 2012 there were a total of 153 deaths by subway trains — and 78 were believed to be suicides, according to data obtained by The Post through a Freedom of Information Act request.

In 2010, a staggering 69 percent of all subway deaths were suicides, or 35 out of 51 total fatalities.

The cases, detailed in incident reports by the MTA, are presented in a matter-of-fact language that belies the ghastly reality.

“[Victim] laid down on s/b express track when s/b train struck [victim] and cut him in half,” reads a Feb. 3, 2010, account about the 33rd Street station.

On Friday, two more people committed subway suicide, including a man who jumped in front of a C train at West 23rd Street and a man who positioned his neck on the elevated tracks at Seneca Avenue in Queens, decapitating himself. His severed head tumbled down to the street below, cops said.

Stations with the most suicides — two each — include Harlem’s 125th Street; 21st Street Queensbridge; 96th Street on the Upper West Side; and Union Turnpike.

The deadliest station — with one suicide and three accidental deaths from 2010 to 2012 — was Union Square. Stations along 14th Street west of Union Square had five deaths during that same span, data reveal.

Meanwhile, homicide by train is exceedingly rare — just two people died after being pushed on the tracks in the three-year span, both in 2012.

All other deaths were accidental, with straphangers being struck climbing on the tracks or falling to their doom in the path of an oncoming train.

Experts said subway suicide is generally a surefire way to end it all — which is what makes it so appealing to those on the brink.

“Believe it or not, when someone sets out to kill themselves they are worried that they will just get maimed, but when you jump in front of a train, that’s it, you die,” said psychiatrist Rami Kaminski.

But not always.

Over the three-year span, a total of 118 people tried to kill themselves — but about 34 percent, or 40 of them, failed, according to the MTA data.

Click here for the complete report.

As I stated at the beginning of this report, it comes as no surprise that suicide was the leading cause of NYC Subway deaths. The only thing that came as a bit of a surprise was the percentage was not higher. Our region has its share of depressed individuals & those serious about it know that getting hit by a train likely will do the trick.

Regardless of the percentage, the problem is clearly one that needs to be addressed as these actual & attempted suicides hurt loved ones of the victim along with the potential issues that will linger for the train operator & his loved ones. As to be expected, the MTA & Transport Workers Union can’t agree on what should be done to make it safer. Hopefully they can come up with an amicable & feasible solution soon.

xoxo Transit Blogger

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