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Witness jumps onto Philadelphia subway tracks to save fallen man

Charles Collins jumped onto the tracks at the 15th Street Station to rescue fallen commuter Alfred McNamee.

By Ben Hooper

PHILADELPHIA, April 17 (UPI) -- Surveillance video from a Philadelphia subway station captured the moment a man jumped into action to rescue an older man who fell onto the tracks.

The video, from about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday shows Charles Collins, 28, walking away from the camera at the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority's 15th Street Station seconds before an older man, identified as Alfred McNamee, takes a wrong step and falls onto the tracks.

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The video shows some witnesses run for help while Collins jumps down onto the tracks and lifts McNamee to safety with help from commuters on the platform.

"I just saw him down and jumped down... just instincts," Collins told WPVI-TV.

Collins suffered a minor leg injury and McNamee was hospitalized with injuries including a broken back, a shattered knee, broken ribs, and a spleen injury that may need surgery to treat.

Collins visited McNamee at the hospital Thursday. He declined to call himself a "hero."

"No, I'm not a hero. I mean, people do the same thing," he said.

SEPTA officials commended the commuters for helping McNamee.

"This was a case where everybody almost in view jumped in and got involved," SEPTA Police Chief Thomas Nestal told WCAU-TV.

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However, officials cautioned against following Collins' course of action, saying there are protocols for similar emergencies.

"There's procedures in place that we would like him to also alert the cashier right away, because that will stop trains from coming in. And alert the police officer, who was actually up by the cashier area," SEPTA Police Inspector Steve Harold said.

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