“I’m glad I was able to stop on time"
A US Indian train driver has been hailed a hero for his quick action in saving a man.
Tobin Madathil, a train driver in New York, managed to stop his F train about 30 feet from a man who was pushed onto the tracks at a Queens subway station.
Tobin said he was pulling into the 21st Street-Queensbridge station at 7:45 am on May 24, 2021.
However, he suddenly thought he saw something in his path.
He said: “Right when I was coming into the station people were waving at me, and that’s when I immediately placed the train into emergency mode.”
Moments earlier, a suspect had pushed the Asian male onto the tracks in what was apparently a hate crime incident.
Tobin managed to stop the train in time.
He said: “I’m glad I was able to stop on time and didn’t hit the guy, thank God!”
Around the same time, good Samaritans helped the victim up.
“I exited the train and went to the victim. He was bleeding from the head.”
The train driver called the subway control centre for medical attention.
Soon after, first responders and the police arrived.
The victim was taken to Mount Sinai Medical Centre after suffering a cut to his forehead. He is expected to make a full recovery.
It was reported that the victim was standing on the southbound platform “when the perpetrator approached him from behind, muttered something to him, and shoved him onto the tracks”.
The NYPD is now looking for the suspect. He is believed to be between 20-30 years old, about six feet tall, and was wearing all-black attire including a face mask, hoodie, pants and shoes on the day of the attack.
The law enforcement agency’s Anti-Hate Taskforce also tweeted to urge people to identify the perpetrator.
Let’s find him. This morning at the Queensbridge F station, the pictured male did push a 35 year old male onto the tracks causing serious physical injury. https://t.co/lQiYx9cCo6
— Asian Hate Crimes Task Force (@NYPDAsianHCTF) May 25, 2021
In a statement, the MTA said it was focused on keeping commuters safe as the subway system comes back from a pandemic slowdown.
A spokesperson said: “Like other transit systems across the country the MTA is experiencing a significant dip in ridership and a spike in crime.
“We continue to call on the de Blasio administration to partner with us and do more to address subway incidents and the ongoing mental health crisis in the city.”
Tobin has been a train operator since 2019. He said that he always tries to be ready for the unexpected.
He said: “I just try to stay focused at all times when I operate, just watch the tracks and platform, just be alert.”