There are no barriers separating the trains from the people on the city’s subway platforms, and many people fall or jump to their deaths in front of rushing trains each year.
Though shoving deaths are rare, Thursday night’s killing came just weeks after a man was pushed in front of a train in Times Square. A homeless man was charged with murder and is awaiting trial.
Other high-profile cases including the 1999 fatal shoving of Kendra Webdale, an aspiring screenwriter, by a former psychiatric patient. That case led to a state law allowing for more supervision of mentally ill people living outside institutions.
Like many subway riders, Micah Siegel follows her own set of safety precautions during her daily commute: Stand against a wall or pillar to keep someone from coming up behind you, and watch out when navigating a crowded or narrow platform to avoid being knocked — even accidentally — onto the tracks.
“I do try to be aware of what’s around me and who’s around me, especially as a young woman,” Siegel, a 21-year-old college student, said as she waited at Pennsylvania Station on Friday.
So does Roth, who’s 60.
“It sounds a little wimpy if you’re like, ‘Who’s going to push me?’ ” he said. “But it’s better to be safe than sorry.”
Associated Press writer Jennifer Peltz contributed to this report.