Woman stumbles onto SEPTA subway tracks, is killed

Philadelphia police truck enforcement unit officers speak to one another at an alleged SEPTA bus accident just below Westmoreland St in N. Philadelphia on Wednesday afternoon August 15, 2012. ( ALEJANDRO A .ALVAREZ / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER )
Philadelphia police truck enforcement unit officers speak to one another at an alleged SEPTA bus accident just below Westmoreland St in N. Philadelphia on Wednesday afternoon August 15, 2012. ( ALEJANDRO A .ALVAREZ / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER )
Posted: August 16, 2012

Police are investigating the death of a 30-year-old South Philadelphia woman who was fatally injured after stumbling onto the tracks at the SEPTA Lombard-South subway station early Wednesday.

It is not clear yet if she was killed by hitting the third rail when she fell or by a train that struck her more than 2 1/2 hours after she landed on the tracks.

The Medical Examiner's Office will conduct an autopsy to determine the cause of death. The woman's name was not released.

According to SEPTA, a review of surveillance video shows the woman entering the station two hours after service ended.

At 2:19, the video shows the woman "inadvertently walking off the platform into the track area where she made contact with the third rail," SEPTA spokeswoman Jerria Williams said in an e-mailed statement.

She was still on the tracks when a northbound Broad Street Line train entered the station and hit her at 5:01 a.m.

The woman was pronounced dead at the scene.

Service on the line was suspended between the Walnut-Locust and Snyder stations and shuttle buses were used instead for three hours after the train struck the woman.

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