Photo: By malbano on Flickr
A recent surge in deaths in New York City’s subway system has drawn attention to the mental consequences for the operators of trains that strike people on the tracks.Today, Pete Donohue at the Daily News reported on the role of “transit chaplains” — the 85 religious figures who are on call to counsel train operators in the immediate aftermath of a collision.
Head chaplain Rabbi Harry Berkowitz said he has responded to about 1,600 calls over several decades. He told the Daily News:
Sometimes, I don’t even talk about the incident, if they are not ready. I start talking about family, other train operators, anything but that subject matter, just to calm them down a bit, just to get their mind away from it.
I try to divert them, give them a sense of calmness and establish a relationship, a trust.
A New York Times story earlier this month revealed that operators expect to hit someone at least once every five years, and that many face long-term psychological trauma.
NOW WATCH: Executive Life videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.