Quincy Calhoun was training a new subway motorman at his job at the MTA in New York City when the unthinkable happened: the trainee fell ill, coughing up blood, clutching his chest, then fainting. Before losing consciousness, he accidentally went through a red signal, triggering the emergency brakes. Calhoun was unable to contact the Rail Communication Center, so he exited the train, went out onto the tracks, disabled the signal manually, and got the train moving again. The trainee was taken to the hospital shortly after that.
If that sounds treacherous, it should; stepping out onto the tracks to get a subway train moving again and manually messing with things that are usually automated is extremely dangerous, not just for him, but the passengers and other crew. But Calhoun, who has been working for the MTA since 1989, was aware of this. In this case, however, he was trying to save someone’s life.
The MTA didn’t really care, though. While it’s obvious that had Calhoun not acted, the trainee would have been in more peril, the veteran motorman still broke the rules, and for that he’s been suspended without pay. But he doesn’t regret his actions:
“Even all this stuff started coming down at me, I didn’t feel bad because I knew I had done the right thing,” he said. “All I was thinking about was getting this guy medical help.”
The MTA stands by its decision, but the TWU Local 100 is working on behalf of Calhoun.
Source: New York Post