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Train Moved Too Soon, Threw Lawyer Underneath

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By Stephanie Rabiner, Esq. on November 01, 2011 9:48 AM

Most people who are thrown under a train don't live to tell the story. But Patricia Biswanga appears to be one lucky lady.

The Delaware County, Penn. attorney claims that she was thrown under a train at the Southeastern Pennsylvania Train Authority's (SEPTA) Eddystone station.

As she struggled to pull her luggage from the car, she felt the train begin to move. She was thrown off-balance, and ended up falling into the train bed between the platform and rails.

Two cars passed over her.

Patricia Biswanga immediately contacted police, who had her taken to a local hospital for evaluation. She was a bit sore, but had no apparent injuries, reports the Philadelphia Inquirer.

She has since scheduled a follow-up with her personal physician.

Even though there were no injuries, SEPTA may be liable for her medical bills and any lasting psychological damage. This is because the Authority's employees may have neglected to follow mandatory safety procedures.

To prevent such incidents, SEPTA policies state that conductors must ensure that passengers are safely on and off trains, reports the paper. Once clear, the conductor can signal to the engineer to start moving.

Biswanga claims she did not see a conductor while she stood on the car's steps. If this is true, the conductor may have been negligent in ensuring that passengers safely exited the train.

SEPTA is currently investigating whether Patricia Biswanga was actually thrown under a train. It has also stated that, if the conductor is at fault, he or she may face suspension.

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