July 17, 2017 3:32 pm

Woman seriously injured after bag becomes stuck in doors of moving subway

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Security cameras at a subway station in Rome captured the horrifying moment a woman’s bag became trapped in the doors of the train – dragging her across the subway platform while other passengers rushed to help her.

The incident occurred this past Wednesday at the Termini station of the Rome Metro subway system.

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In security camera video obtained by Italian news agency Corriere, the woman is seen considering boarding the train before stepping back onto the platform. That’s when the strap of her bag appears to become trapped as the train doors close.

The woman, identified in local media reports as 43-year-old Natalya Garkovich, is then dragged forwards down the platform as the train begins to leave the station. Within seconds several passengers rush to her aid, while others desperately try to signal the driver that someone is stuck.

However, their efforts are in vain as the woman is dragged almost the length of the platform before leaving the view of security cameras.

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The woman suffered extensive injuries, including several broken bones, and is currently in intensive care at a Rome hospital. It is not known at this time whether she hit the far wall of the station, however amateur video also obtained by Corriere shows her prone body lying a short distance inside the tunnel at the far end of the station, presumably in the aftermath of the accident.

According to local media outlets, passengers on board the train attempted to pull the emergency stop lever, but that failed to halt the train’s movement. The strap on her bag also failed to set off the sensors in the train’s automatic doors, which are supposed to prevent them closing on or trapping anything.

Scrutiny has also fallen on the train’s driver, Gianluca Tonelli, who is shown eating a sandwich in the cab of the train as it pulls away – with a helpless Garkovich in tow.

Ansa News in Italy reports that the driver is currently being investigated by prosecutors in Rome as well as Rome’s ATAC transit authority.

Tonelli said that while he’s “devastated” by what happened, he doesn’t believe he should shoulder all the blame for what happened.

“I know that I was wrong and I am devastated by what happened to that woman,” Tonelli told Corriere. “But in the video it can also be seen that I look twice in the mirror, I was not reckless. The lady made a strange manoeuver up and down, the security system has not reported anything to me and I left. Now the most important thing is that she recovers soon. ”

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The union representing Rome’s transit workers is also speaking up in defence of Tonelli.

“The train driver respected protocol. He set off the alarm that warns passengers that the doors are closing,” Stefano Bottoni, National Secretary of trade union Sul, told Ansa News. “In that moment, a woman got stuck. But the driver got the signal that it was safe to go and only had to control the lights. If cabin where the driver is situated on the train had cameras, then this whole situation could have been different.”

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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