Danger on the Tracks: Subway Dead Man’s Switch Avoids Catastrophe

The dead man’s switch is a handle the subway operator must keep depressed while the train is in motion. If the train operator lets go, the train will stop immediately as if an emergency brake was pulled. Every subway train comes equipped with a dead man’s switch.

Last week, a motorman of a G train in Long Island City was pulling out of the Court Square station when it suddenly stopped. The conductor walked to the cab and found the motorman unconscious, having suffered a fatal heart attack while the train was in motion. Because the train automatically stopped there … Read the rest