WESTERLY, R.I. (WPRI) — The name of the Amtrak employee who was killed in an accident at the Westerly station was made public Wednesday as the investigation into her death continued.
Emily Anne Herrera, 26, of Brockton, fell underneath the train she was working on as it was getting ready to stop at the station on Saturday, according to Westerly police. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
While Amtrak is now investigating the incident, a rail safety expert and former Amtrak conductor gave 12 News some insight on Tuesday. Mike Callanan said Herrera was in the flagging position, which is when a conductor stands by the open door to watch the train enter or leave the station.
He went on to explain that unlike most stations, Westerly has a low-level platform and conductors have to put stairs down for passengers.
“On a high-level platform, normally the stairs aren’t down. You just stand in the doorway,” Callanan said. “But I’m guessing she was using the stairs to perform that position and she lost her balance and slipped and fell underneath the train.”
Callanan suggested the station should raise its platform to make it safer.