Report: Red Line death not the first time someone has gotten caught in a train door here

There are incidents dating back to the 1990s of people getting stuck and injured in MBTA train doors.

An inbound Red Line train arrives at the Broadway station in Boston, MA on April 12. Craig F. Walker/Globe staff

The death of Robinson Lalin, who was killed Sunday when his arm became stuck in a Red Line train door, has engendered an outpouring of horror and sympathy. But similar incidents have occurred here over the years, according to contemporaneous reports.

People have become caught in train doors, and were injured, at least a few times since the 1990s, according to a review by The Boston Globe, which obtained archives regarding the incidents.

Lalin, 39, of Boston, died Sunday after his arm became trapped in the train door and he was dragged at Broadway station around 12:30 a.m. Many details of Lalin’s death remain under investigation, including whether the train malfunctioned, or whether the operator was at fault.


Here’s a look at similar incidents found by the Globe:

  • In March 1990, a man got his shoulder and arm stuck in an Orange Line train door while exiting the train at State Street. He was able to wrench his arm free, describing it as “bruised and strained.”
  • Just before the previous incident, a woman had her arm trapped in a Green Line train door at the Arlington Street station. She was dragged for about 30 feet and injured.
  • In 1999, James Glovesky, 14, died when he was run over by a Red Line train. His family said his clothes were stuck in a train door; the MBTA said he was holding onto the outside of the train as a thrill-seeking stunt. The T was found not liable for his death.
  • A woman’s jacket and backpack became stuck in a Red Line train door in 2003. Another passenger contacted the driver, and a T employee freed her.
  • At Central Square in 2015, a man got his bag and his hand caught in a Red Line train door. Someone pulled the emergency break, and called for help.

In an email Tuesday about the latest fatality, a spokesperson for the National Transportation Safety Board said investigators anticipate finishing the on-the-ground portion of the investigation within the next few days. They are looking at equipment and conducting interviews and will create a preliminary report.

They have not determined a date when the report will be released, according to the spokesperson.

GoFundMe has been set up to help pay for Lalin’s funeral expenses. 

Read the Globe’s full report at BostonGlobe.com.


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