Boy, 6, falls into LIRR gap in Babylon

Boy, 6, falls into LIRR gap in Babylon

There are 100 comments on the Newsday story from Jul 4, 2007, titled Boy, 6, falls into LIRR gap in Babylon. In it, Newsday reports that:

A 6-year-old boy exiting a Long Island Rail Road train at the Babylon station fell through a gap between the train and platform.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Newsday.

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BACKATCHA

Lindenhurst, NY

#97 Jul 5, 2007
New to LI wrote:
<quoted text>
The gap IS a problem. I'm fully aware of the gap, but it is not always so easy to step over it. I have a minor lingering disability from having broken my back and pelvis in a car accident 4 years ago. Sometimes the gap is over a foot wide, and it's hard for me to negotiate, especially while carrying a bag, a folded stroller and holding the hand of my 3-year-old.
I can read, and I'm not stupid, but I have lost my footing trying to get across the gap, and so has my son who has been left dangling over the gap, suspended by one arm, my heart racing as I desperately drop my belongings and pull him to safety.
I just moved to LI from Brooklyn. I've riden the NYC subways for years. I've never had such a problem getting on and off the train before.
The gap sucks!
Boo-Hoo
Ask for assistance if it's a continued issue for you and you know it in advance BEFORE boarding.
elohssa

Spring Valley, NY

#99 Jul 5, 2007
New to LI wrote:
<quoted text>
The gap IS a problem. I'm fully aware of the gap, but it is not always so easy to step over it. I have a minor lingering disability from having broken my back and pelvis in a car accident 4 years ago. Sometimes the gap is over a foot wide, and it's hard for me to negotiate, especially while carrying a bag, a folded stroller and holding the hand of my 3-year-old.
I can read, and I'm not stupid, but I have lost my footing trying to get across the gap, and so has my son who has been left dangling over the gap, suspended by one arm, my heart racing as I desperately drop my belongings and pull him to safety.
I just moved to LI from Brooklyn. I've riden the NYC subways for years. I've never had such a problem getting on and off the train before.
The gap sucks!
oh the drama.."my son dangling by own arm, suspended over the gap"...please spare us.

Take the bus or a cab then. Or take the train from a station that doesn't have a major gap problem.

I guess if your physical problem and your childs safety was of more concern for you...you would've considered that already.

Happy dangling to you and your child.

“take a deep breath”

Since: Jul 07

Huntington Station, NY

#100 Jul 5, 2007
BACKATCHA wrote:
<quoted text>Boo-Hoo
Ask for assistance if it's a continued issue for you and you know it in advance BEFORE boarding.
So I and every other person who is not 100% able-bodied is supposed to flag down an LIRR worker to hold our hands to get on and off the trains every day? How many conductors do you see available to perform this task at each stop? It's not workable.

Also, sometimes the gap is 6 inches or so, which is manageable, and sometimes it's about 18 inches. How am I supposed to anticipate that?

But I'm glad you got a chance to say "boo-hoo" to a person who worked her way out of a wheelchair--and who carried a baby to full term while recovering from spinal and pelvic fractures, working 2 jobs up until the day before he was born.(Something I felt I needed to do, since my unborn daughter was killed in the car accident in which I was so badly injured.) Just thought I'd provide you with a few more details in case you'd like to belittle me a little bit more.
elohssa

Spring Valley, NY

#101 Jul 5, 2007
New to LI wrote:
<quoted text>
So I and every other person who is not 100% able-bodied is supposed to flag down an LIRR worker to hold our hands to get on and off the trains every day? How many conductors do you see available to perform this task at each stop? It's not workable.
Also, sometimes the gap is 6 inches or so, which is manageable, and sometimes it's about 18 inches. How am I supposed to anticipate that?
But I'm glad you got a chance to say "boo-hoo" to a person who worked her way out of a wheelchair--and who carried a baby to full term while recovering from spinal and pelvic fractures, working 2 jobs up until the day before he was born.(Something I felt I needed to do, since my unborn daughter was killed in the car accident in which I was so badly injured.) Just thought I'd provide you with a few more details in case you'd like to belittle me a little bit more.
I see you just joined this forum a few hours ago.

A little advice. If you're looking for sympathy here you are NOT going to find it.

Try some support groups for "mom's who would rather complain about the gap than find alternate transportation or ask for assistance getting on the train"

“take a deep breath”

Since: Jul 07

Huntington Station, NY

#102 Jul 5, 2007
elohssa wrote:
<quoted text>
oh the drama.."my son dangling by own arm, suspended over the gap"...please spare us.
Take the bus or a cab then. Or take the train from a station that doesn't have a major gap problem.
I guess if your physical problem and your childs safety was of more concern for you...you would've considered that already.
Happy dangling to you and your child.
Do you have kids? It is pretty damn scary to be holding them by one arm while they're hanging over that gap. If it happened to you and you're heart wasn't racing for about an hour after, I'd say you were pretty heartless. But I don't know you, so I'll try to refrain from judging. I'll try to refrain from geting personal and being deffensive, alothough your reply to me was personally offensive.

Are we adults here or what? I'm really amazed how important it seems to be to everyone to attack one another.

As for your suggestion to take a cab or a bus from Suffolk county to Brooklyn to work every day, that's pretty unreasonable. The bottom line is that the LIRR is charged with providing safe public transportation which is accessible to all. The gap is a public safety problem that needs to be addressed by the LIRR. In the meantime, it would help if people were to hold their kid's hands and mind the signs. But I have only the slightest lingering disability from my accident, and I am affected by the gap problem. I know there are many people who are worse off than me. Those people deserve the same public transportation service as everyone else. Really, is it more important to attack them or to expect them to all be able to afford private car service (great for the environment, btw) than to explore the actual topic at hand and think of ways to build a safer and more equitable society?

“take a deep breath”

Since: Jul 07

Huntington Station, NY

#103 Jul 5, 2007
elohssa wrote:
<quoted text>
I see you just joined this forum a few hours ago.
A little advice. If you're looking for sympathy here you are NOT going to find it.
Try some support groups for "mom's who would rather complain about the gap than find alternate transportation or ask for assistance getting on the train"
Gee, thanks for the heads-up. But I'm not looking for sympathy, I was just trying to show that the gap is a public safety problem for reasons that people may not think of, because it's not part of their every day life.

As for alternative transportation, I live in acommunity with public transportation and I have the right to use it, and the LIRR has an obligation to ensure that it is safe to use. Why would anyone want to argue against safe public transportation?
JO ANN

Fresh Meadows, NY

#104 Jul 5, 2007
The comment about the parent holding the child's hand is unnecessary.....maybe the child was walking on the train as his mother was holding the younger sister. how about fix the damn gaps so children CANNOT fall through the gaps. she could have been holding his hand, would that make the gap smaller???? no.....he still would have fallen through it
A Taxpayer

Bronx, NY

#105 Jul 5, 2007
Whatever wrote:
<quoted text>
I'm not making excuses for the LIRR. I want people held accountable for their own clumsiness. I understand that accidents happen, but we can't learn from the mistakes of 900 other people?
Let's "learn" from 900 other people - and FIX THE GAPS. How many more times does this need to happen?

Quiz: Have you EVER heard of this on another Railroad or subway?

NO, because their gaps are 3 inches. People CANNOT FALL TO THE TRACKS - period. The LIRR is hugely irresponsible here, and pays $Millions (in legal settlements) for it. Then they raise your fares.
A Taxpayer

Bronx, NY

#106 Jul 5, 2007
Richiemagoo wrote:
<quoted text>
<quoted text>
HAhahahah!!!! Thanks, Bill, for the best laughs I've had in a while!!
As Hitler said to his unexpected company: "If I knew were coming, I'd have baked a k1ke!"
I'm so sick of hearing about the gap & people who don't know enough to pick their feet up when they walk! When I was a kid, the LIRR trains would often run with the end doors and even side doors open, meaning that ya had open platforms on the trains. Never once heard of anyone falling out. Parents had enough sense to watch their kids back then. Today they can't hold a kids hand and step over gaps that have been there for 30 or 40 years?!
Hey Richie - ever been to New York?

I think not, too many family members to breed with in Kentucky.
A Taxpayer

Bronx, NY

#107 Jul 5, 2007
Metro wrote:
<quoted text> You are absolutely right. And as someone else pointed out-being from NC, the kids had probably never been on a train before. Therefore, they have should have been even more cautious. Also- keep them away from the edge of the platform whether on the LIRR, Metro, The Tube and on and on-
Yes and whenever you KNOW a dangerous situation or accident is about to happen take them out of the way.

If you know they are about to be hit by lightening or if an earthquake is about to happen - get them to safety. Not doing so means you are a bad parent.

Gee, If everyone just drove this way their would be no traffic accidents at all. If everyone handled their firearms properly their would be no accidental deaths.

Hey - guess what? EVERYONE is a moron, according to some people here.
A Taxpayer

Bronx, NY

#109 Jul 6, 2007
Slappy White wrote:
<quoted text>
Everyone who has ever fallen into the gap is certainly a moron.
Everyone who uses superlatives awhen calling other poeople a moron - is an idiot (lower than a moron - look it up).
What a Joke

Brooklyn, NY

#110 Jul 6, 2007
A Taxpayer wrote:
<quoted text>
Let's "learn" from 900 other people - and FIX THE GAPS. How many more times does this need to happen?
Quiz: Have you EVER heard of this on another Railroad or subway?
NO, because their gaps are 3 inches. People CANNOT FALL TO THE TRACKS - period. The LIRR is hugely irresponsible here, and pays $Millions (in legal settlements) for it. Then they raise your fares.
You may want to check that - the gaps are 3 inches or less where there are NO FREIGHT TRAINS (which are wider than commuter trains)that use their tracks. LIRR tracks are used by freight too.
Dreidel

Stafford, VA

#113 Jul 6, 2007
Richiemagoo wrote:
<quoted text>
We never heard of it on the LIRR until the drunken teen fell into the gap at Woodside....and Newsday decided to make this a pet issue.
As for the subways, there are many places in the NYC subway where the gap is much more than 3"- some of the stations do have gap fillers (like South Ferry on the 7th ave. IRT and 14th St. on the Lex)...and some dont (One station in particular on the White Plains Rd. line in the Bronx- forget which one- possibly Simpson St- D'oh!-is on quite a curve and has huge gaps!) and even though many more people use the subway, I've never once in my 39 years of living in NY heard of anyone falling in (But I'm sure that will change now, as the issue has gotten so much publicity, and there is money to be made)
We now live in a litigenous $cha-ching$ society which has just gotten worse over the years. Too many kids going to law school nowadays. And for all you lawyers to be, calm down,I was just kidding.
BACKATCHA

Lindenhurst, NY

#117 Jul 7, 2007
New to LI wrote:
<quoted text>
So I and every other person who is not 100% able-bodied is supposed to flag down an LIRR worker to hold our hands to get on and off the trains every day? How many conductors do you see available to perform this task at each stop? It's not workable.
Also, sometimes the gap is 6 inches or so, which is manageable, and sometimes it's about 18 inches. How am I supposed to anticipate that?
But I'm glad you got a chance to say "boo-hoo" to a person who worked her way out of a wheelchair--and who carried a baby to full term while recovering from spinal and pelvic fractures, working 2 jobs up until the day before he was born.(Something I felt I needed to do, since my unborn daughter was killed in the car accident in which I was so badly injured.) Just thought I'd provide you with a few more details in case you'd like to belittle me a little bit more.
Wow, do you open yourself up for comment! I could feed off of this one but I choose not to! And yes, there are conductors who stand at the doors while people are boarding! Yes, I do expect them to HOLD YOUR HAND if that's the service you need and I'm absolutely SURE you have never attempted to ask for such assistance so you can not say for SURE they would not be available to do so... And to be honest, I was not at all interested in your "DETAILS".

Since: Mar 07

Massapequa, NY

#118 Jul 7, 2007
Oh wow the GAP story is back again. I rather the LIRR spend money on improving service and keeping fares down than trying to fix GAPs that are only effecting a handful of people who can't watch where they are going.
A Taxpayer

Bronx, NY

#119 Jul 8, 2007
twosides2astory wrote:
Oh wow the GAP story is back again. I rather the LIRR spend money on improving service and keeping fares down than trying to fix GAPs that are only effecting a handful of people who can't watch where they are going.
The GAP story never left. It WAS buried and kept quiet by the LIRR for many years, but literally hundreds of people have been injured by the GAP. Also, I don't know about you, but I think NOT INJURING your customers is the FIRST step toward good service, something the LIRR still cannot do.

Once again, if the GAP was set to accepted ADA standard of 3 inches, like almost ALL other RR's in ths US the kid COULD NOT have fallen through.

Since: Mar 07

Massapequa, NY

#120 Jul 12, 2007
A Taxpayer wrote:
<quoted text>
The GAP story never left. It WAS buried and kept quiet by the LIRR for many years, but literally hundreds of people have been injured by the GAP. Also, I don't know about you, but I think NOT INJURING your customers is the FIRST step toward good service, something the LIRR still cannot do.
Once again, if the GAP was set to accepted ADA standard of 3 inches, like almost ALL other RR's in ths US the kid COULD NOT have fallen through.
Of course saftey for passengers should be the number one concern for th LIRR, but as you said hundreds were injured out of hundreds of thousands who are not. People have to accept some responsibility for there safety as well which they don't. You should search for the newsday article I believe it was back in Jan of this year explaining history of the LIRR how and why there is a GAP, they can't have a GAP 3" because fright trains are wider than the current passenger trains. If you think eliminating freight is the answer it isn't we don't need more trucks on the roads and it's good for LI economy. The boy also would not have gotten hurt if his parent held on to him.
little boy

West Babylon, NY

#121 May 29, 2010
that poor little boy
Jane Says

Bethpage, NY

#122 May 30, 2010
Metro wrote:
<quoted text> They were out of towners-from North Carolina. Not everyone is aware of the gap problem.
as a regular commuter, i've been on trains in other areas and instead of platforms there are plastic stairs at stations. people manage. parents who don't watch their children are everywhere, but unfortunately their lack of parental responsibility will result in a lawsuit payout as a reward for their carelessness in not watching their child.
lauren

West Babylon, NY

#123 May 30, 2010
There is an obvious sign that says watch the gap. They should have noticed it. And should have been paying attention to their child. Thats parenting problems not the trains fault. Plenty of people go on that train everyday.

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