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  #1  
Old 16-07-2017, 10:39 PM
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Witnessing tragic/morbid events

Apologies for the morbid title of the topic but i was witness to a train fatality on Friday night on my way home from work. The rescue services were having to deal with the person underneath my carriage and I saw people on the platform inconsolable and covered in blood.

It's been on my mind since then and I've had s few dreams about it but wondered if anyone else had witnessed anything like this be it transport or anything else?
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Old 16-07-2017, 11:01 PM
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It's something that will never leave you unfortunately. Seek counselling for post traumatic stress. We used to get it in the forces and lots of train drivers and other grades on the railway also have to face it regularly. We had one at Croy today. A suicidal bloke ran under a train I was driving last May. Have to feel for the emergency services dealing with it daily.
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Old 16-07-2017, 11:02 PM
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Sorry you had to go through that.

When I was 16 at a party there was a bit of a fracas and it ended up with a couple of people being run over and one of them died. I dont remember much of the event but the aftermath is clear in my mind to this day (20 years later).

The worst bit was the police interviews a few days later at school where everyone who had been at the party was called to give evidence. I felt terrible as I couldnt help at all despite being only a few metres away from the van. For the life of me I couldnt remember the colour of the van or any details of the driver. I could recall with absolute clarity the way the girl looked after the van had driven over her.

Fortunately others knew who the driver was and he was caught. It has made me try and be much more observant in life.
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Old 16-07-2017, 11:17 PM
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I gave assistance to a guy in a traffic accident. He had simply passed out and crashed apparently. I handed him over to an ambulance crew when they arrived, after doing CPR for a while. In reality I knew he was dead as I did it. I still have visions of it and very very slight panic moments that I caused the death or did it wrong or etc.....I really admire the various professionals who deal with this regularly. I didn't need help but Christ knows how those amazing people deal with it every day.
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Old 17-07-2017, 09:26 AM
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My wife and I have had a couple of bad incidents.

In Paris, we saw a homeless guy jump in front of a metro train. All you could see was him tumbling beneath the wheels, the horrified look on the driver's face and then still underneath, everything covered by the man's coat. My wife and I didn't know what to do. We'd agreed with each other that he'd jumped rather than pushed and we decided to leave. We walked all the way back. My wife had nightmares for weeks. As an FYI, this day didn't improve - later we saw a woman hit by a bus outside the Opera metro station and that evening I cracked a tooth whilst eating, minor by comparison, but made me not want to leave the hotel the next day!

A couple of years later, we were on a bus stopped at lights in Jakarta. The motorbike next to us jumped them, lost control and was smashed by a car. Both the guys on the bike went flying across the road with both of their helmets flying further still. There are actually signs in Jakarta telling people to do their helmets up as nobody does. One guy was face down and there was a lot of blood around him, particularly his head. The image which sticks with me though is seeing his friend with a massive bleeding head wound and a leg twisted at a weird angle trying to drag himself across the tarmac to get to the other person. People rushed to help... but our bus driver just went around it once the light had gone green.

On both occasions, we have no idea what the outcome was. In an effort for "closure", I did do some internet searching after the events, but nothing really came up. I do still wonder what happened to those involved.
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Old 17-07-2017, 09:50 AM
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It's something that will never leave you unfortunately. Seek counselling for post traumatic stress.
Dull technical note: it's a normal reaction to experience some element of nightmares and/or flashbacks, jumpiness, extra vigilance for a while, if you see something awful. So you would only really want to go looking for therapy if those symptoms continue beyond a month or so. I guess where if your livelihood, and your doing a job where it's not hugely unlikely to happen again, it is probably fair enough to start sooner.
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Old 17-07-2017, 10:04 AM
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A good number of years ago, had a small van, going at some speed, overtake me on a country road. As I approached the next bend, A woman going the other way, was frantically waving a hand out of the window, motioning for me to slow down. Went around the bend to see the van on its side. Myself and two other guys who stopped found two unconsciousness blokes inside. They both started to stir. We then broke every first aid rule in the book. Instead of leaving them in the van we pulled them out. One guy was quite bloodied, the other who actually appeared less aware and present was almost grey in colour. I saw a packet of cigs in his top pocket, so offered him one of my cigarettes !! Finally a nurse in a passing car came over and took control,having had to shout at me to not light a cigarette for myself as I stood by the upturned van.

I never found out what happened to the two young guys in the van, but just hope that my appalling attempts to be helpful did not injure them (or worse), more than it should have.

I would like to think if I ever found myself in the same position again I would be far calmer and clear headed to deal with the situation.

I know they are trained for such things, but I so admire anyone who works for the emergency services who have to deal with far worse than I saw.
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Old 17-07-2017, 10:07 AM
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Witnessed a guy jump under a train at Haywards Heath, luckily I was far enough way not to see too much detail. I've seen body parts after a fatality. Sometimes it's the near misses that you think of more... I had a close call at East Croydon with a child's buggy... you keep thinking what could have happened. I've had 2 attempted suicides. Managed to stop on one, the other I knew I wasn't gonna brake in time... so sounded the horn continuously, he moved out the way at last second. Every time you go past the location... you can't help but think about it.
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Old 17-07-2017, 10:15 AM
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Dull technical note: it's a normal reaction to experience some element of nightmares and/or flashbacks, jumpiness, extra vigilance for a while, if you see something awful. So you would only really want to go looking for therapy if those symptoms continue beyond a month or so. I guess where if your livelihood, and your doing a job where it's not hugely unlikely to happen again, it is probably fair enough to start sooner.

A nasty experience and my sympathy to all those involved.

Jules is correct and I would add that you should seek some form of verbal "unpacking" about 72 hours after the event. Perhaps you can access something like "TRIM" via your employer or your GP surgery might signpost you?

If you are still suffering the affects after two weeks, you certainly need professional guidance. Sometimes you need someone who knows you well to spot the signs, but a continued trend of doing things more or less (eating, sleeping, drinking, smoking, getting anxious) are strong indicators.

However - you can process the experience, everyone does it differently - and please do take care of yourself.
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Old 17-07-2017, 10:24 AM
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My cousin and I were walking over a bridge on the side of the road and a motorbike plowed into the back of a bunch of cars doing about 80. He went flying through the air like superman and we literally had to dive out of the way because a Ducati was flying right at our heads.

I'll never forget the "splat" sound he made. Called the ambulance and was talking to the guy who was barely alive. Ambulance was taking forever then somebody saw a gun laying next to him. Within 30 seconds about ten police cars turned up

Was pretty awful
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Old 17-07-2017, 10:27 AM
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Dull technical note: it's a normal reaction to experience some element of nightmares and/or flashbacks, jumpiness, extra vigilance for a while, if you see something awful. So you would only really want to go looking for therapy if those symptoms continue beyond a month or so. I guess where if your livelihood, and your doing a job where it's not hugely unlikely to happen again, it is probably fair enough to start sooner.
Yeah, maybe you won't get anything from it; maybe you will. You can't undo what's been done though. Doesn't hurt to try though. In a groundhog day job like train driving talk of suicides are never far away, as they happen so often. If you have witnessed one, chances are you will have post traumatic stress to a certain degree, as your brain won't allow you to process it all at first. I think its its way of protecting you. Something like that anyway.
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Old 17-07-2017, 10:48 AM
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When I was at Warlingham school I saw a kid get hit by a car outside Hamsey Green shops (around 1992) and when I worked in the Palace club shop (around 2001ish) I saw a guy on a motorbike jump the lights at then Whitehorse Lane/Park Road junction and smash into a car and go flying over the handlebars.

Still think about them both to this day.
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Old 17-07-2017, 11:46 AM
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Years ago when I was in my third year of Uni, I'd popped out from my Halls to go grab some hot wings from the chicken shack down the road. As I got to the crossroads, I had the misfortune to see a cyclist run over by a large articulated lorry (to this day, despite vividly remembering the incident, I am not sure whether it was the cyclist cutting the lorry up, or the driver not being observant). There were tens of witnesses closer than I.

The way that the wheels bounced as they went over the bike, and the cyclist, stayed with me for a long time.

I am not ashamed to say that I walked straight past the chicken place and into the underground station and went straight home to my parents on autopilot. I had this uncontrollable need to get a hug off my Mum. Very weird feeling.

Edit: Oddly, in my subsequent career, I went on to see many worse things than this, but nothing affected me quite like that. It's odd how the mind works.
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Old 17-07-2017, 12:02 PM
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Try to put it out of your mind as much as you can , I know that is not easy , As tragic as these things are they are part of life and death , I have seen a few bad things in my life and I go home to my family and think how lucky am I , Witnessing awful things puts life into prospective though . Life is for living and helping others when they are in need , The older I get the more I wish people would stop and think about how short our lives really are and how we waste them worrying about shite .
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Old 17-07-2017, 12:09 PM
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I was working at King's Cross for most of the second half of the 1980s, at Rough Trade, and living, conveniently, in Brixton. So I was walking into the tube and just about to go through the ticket barrier when I caught a whiff in the air and saw smoke rising up the stairwells. There were plenty of people plunging into it, nonetheless. I turned back and wemnt to the pub and it wasn't long before news began to come through of what was happening.
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Old 17-07-2017, 12:18 PM
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Apologies for the morbid title of the topic but i was witness to a train fatality on Friday night on my way home from work. The rescue services were having to deal with the person underneath my carriage and I saw people on the platform inconsolable and covered in blood.

It's been on my mind since then and I've had s few dreams about it but wondered if anyone else had witnessed anything like this be it transport or anything else?
I found out today (through family who work in transport) that the incident wasn't 'self harm' and that the individual was retrieving something from the track. It almost makes it worse by how needless it was and while I don't know for a fact, I can only assume that it was someone young.

Funny enough when I saw two men running around the platform in blood (this is a Sydney suburban platform I should say) my first thought was recent incidents in London and that someone was running around stabbing people on the train. I Was going to run, until I saw one of the people covered in blood sink to the platform. He was clearly a friend or passer by on the platform who had blood thrown over them by the impact.

I haven't been able to get hold of anymore information currently. Proving very hard to put to the back of my mind.
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Old 17-07-2017, 12:44 PM
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Try to put it out of your mind as much as you can , I know that is not easy .

Taken literally, this is the worst possible advice. As JMF says in post 9, you need to talk about what you've seen, if only to friends or family. Trying to avoid the memory, or reminders of the incident, is really unhelpful.
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Old 17-07-2017, 01:05 PM
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Old 17-07-2017, 01:54 PM
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Taken literally, this is the worst possible advice. As JMF says in post 9, you need to talk about what you've seen, if only to friends or family. Trying to avoid the memory, or reminders of the incident, is really unhelpful.
Disagree , Talking it out is not for everyone . One size doesn't fit all .
The world Wars were dreadful for instance but people moved on and rarely spoke of what they felt or saw .
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Old 17-07-2017, 02:10 PM
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Had nigh on 20years in Fire Service. Saw. And dealt with quite a few nasty things. Best way to deal with it for me was with the Black humour when back on Station some of which is so terrible I won't even try to repeat on here. Never felt the need to talk about it at home. Has any of it affected me long term? Who knows.
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