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Calgary Transit launches safety review after woman pushed onto tracks

CTrain platform at Victoria Park Stampede station.
CTrain platform at Victoria Park Stampede station. Jill Croteau

Rozalia Meichl, 64, has been partially paralyzed following what police believe was a random act of violence.

She was shoved onto the CTrain tracks at the Victoria Park Stampede Station last Thursday.

READ MORE: Woman pushed onto CTrain tracks in ‘random’ attack; suspect charged

The train stopped in time but the fall to the tracks below was severe enough it injured her spine, leaving her a paraplegic.

Rozalia Meichl, 64, was pushed in front of a train on Thursday in what police called a random attack.
Rozalia Meichl, 64, was pushed in front of a train on Thursday in what police called a random attack. Supplied by Charmaine Newman

In the hours following this tragic incident, Calgary Transit officials said they launched a detailed internal safety review to see what, if anything, could have been done.

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Brian Whitelaw, Transit’s public safety coordinator, said little could have been done to anticipate this unpredictable tragedy.

“In this type of case, no matter what Calgary Transit can do or what this woman could have done, this was an unpredicted violent action that would have been extremely difficult to have prevented,” Whitelaw said.

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Officials said they’ve already increased the distance from the train to the edge of the platform from one to two feet. But they caution users to use that yellow line only as a guideline and to stand at least another couple of metres away from it.

READ MORE: Daughter of woman pushed in front of CTrain speaks about life-changing injuries: ‘She is a fighter’

Meichl volunteered at the Kerby Centre. People there still trying to make sense of what happened. CEO Luanne Whitmarsh said it’s a grave reminder to all of them.

“I’m sad it happened to Rose and I’m scared it could happen again.”

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“Always be aware of your surroundings.Be aware of people around you. Think, be alert, protect yourself,” Whitmarsh said.

Stephanie Favel, 35, has been charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, and breach of probation in connection to the incident.

She pleaded guilty to aggravated assault on March 22, 2019, according to her lawyer Adriano Iovinelli.

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