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Railroad rescue: Woman saves man from train in Pensacola

Railroad rescue: Woman saves man from train in Pensacola

A split-second decision to help a stranger may have averted a tragedy and saved a life.

The sight of trains and the sound of whistles are common in downtown Pensacola.

Claire Lawry said it will never be the same again for her. She was stopped at the corner of Gregory and Alcaniz near the Bay Center Tuesday when she noticed a driver blow past her.

"As he went past me I noticed he was clutching his chest and leaning back in his seat. It became apparent to me he may have been having some cardiac trouble, and he lost control of the vehicle and ran up on the train tracks," Lawry said.

Lawry called 911 and screamed for help.

"It almost felt like it wasn't real. He was unconscious with his car on the track and a train was coming. It was like something out of a movie," Lawry said.

Others in the area who heard her came to help. One person ran up the track, alerting the engineer to stop.

Pensacola police body cam video captured Lawry giving a statement to police. They commended her actions and said this could have ended badly.

"Fortunately, they were in the city where the speed limit is slower for trains. If this had happened on Scenic Highway, it could have been different," said Officer Mike Wood.

Lawry is just glad she was there to help.

"I was just in the right place at the right time. No one else was around, and if I didn't stop, I didn't know what was going to happen to him," she said.

Police said she did what good people do.

"She took matters into her own hands, and did exactly what she had to do," Wood said.

The man in the car was conscious and alert when he was transported. His name and condition aren't known.


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