People streamed out of the 96th street station at Broadway in a panic early Thursday, and it appears it was because of an “unruly customer.” One twitter user said the person had jumped onto the tracks.
Update: Capt. Marlon Larin at the 24th precinct says the panic was caused by a report of a gun on the train, or a “gun run” in police parlance.
“An unknown person on a train yelled out that someone had a firearm and panic ensued. There were Transit units already on scene and there was no evidence of anyone actually possessing a gun.”
As one tipster wrote to us: “I live on the upper west side and take the 1/2/3 train to work in the morning. Today, around 7:50am, I was walking into the 96th street subway from the north side and hoards of people were running out, screaming and crying, telling people to not go down there. No one could tell me what happened.”
The MTA said on twitter that there was an “unruly customer” at 96th. (It was a busy morning on the 1, 2, 3 line. Later they also reported a sick passenger at 110th and another unruly person at 125th.)
@taryn1126 There was a report of an unruly customer at the 96 St subway. NYPD was notified. Service is on or close to schedule. ^JP
— NYCT Subway (@NYCTSubway) March 3, 2016
@patbits someone jumped in front of a train. Left a backpack on the platform, people ran thinking it was a bomb. May or may not be.
— Paola Massiel (@_PaolaMassiel) March 3, 2016
(Update: Paola tells us she didn’t witness the incident, but her friend did.)
@westsiderag I was there, but didn't see what happened, just hysteria coming my way. I was pushed down and stepped on. Scariest NYC moment.
— Karen Bridges (@karmib_ny) March 3, 2016
We have reached out to NYPD and witnesses and will hopefully have more information soon. If you have any information on this please let us know in the comments or at westsiderag at gmail.
File photo by Benjamin Kabak.
In addition to info on the “unruly customer”, I would be very interested in why the other riders acted so frantically.
Because it’s New York City. The armpit of the world..
A friend of mine said there was a loud pop/gunshot sound before people starting panicking and frantically running. She was really shaken up by the whole thing- said it was probably the scariest experience of her many years in NYC. I sure would like to hear more from someone who has better information.
So stay in NZ and don’t bother us.
I was on the platform. Many people started screaming and there was a mad rush for the exits – I know why I ran but it’s hard to imagine people would run SCREAMING from an “unruly customer.”
Can you explain more about what you saw? You said “I know why I ran.” Did you see anything? WSR
The MTA only started using the “unruly passenger” nomenclature in its alerts a month or two ago, and this sounds much more disruptive than what I had understood it to mean.
Sorry I had Mexican food last night, this is what caused the problem at 96th street station.
My nanny was on the platform and heard a few pops then people starting running for exits. She said the herd was terrifying. As she was leaving, police cars were swarming the station. Has to be more to this story.
WTF?!! I always say that Times Square is probably the safest subway station on NYC due to police presence and surveillance, but it’s the soft target stations and neighborhoods like W96 (my stop actually) and the UWS that kinda scare me simply by their relative peace and complacency, sorry just my paranoid ramblings but really, THINK ABOUT IT….
Please clarify whether the “unruly customer” and “An unknown person on a train [who]yelled out that someone had a firearm” are one-in-the-same.
I was waiting for the 1 train at sround 7:50 am and all of sudden I hear a woman scream and everyone on the platform started running so fast! I didn’t know what to do so I just ran with everyone else, people were running for there lives and some were even ducking but when I asked a few what’s going on, nobody knew nothing! It was terrifying and so confusing!
ron shapley characterized NYC as,
“The armpit of the world”.
While I fully acknowledge that much of the Big Apple’s flesh is, if not already thoroughly rotten than well on its way to becoming so, I’m afraid that your comment suggests little familiarity with the rest of the world. Suffice it to say that there are MANY parts of the world that make this apple look downright pristine by comparison.
(Though one wonders how much longer this can remain so if current immigration trends continue unabated.)
Ron Shapley — your small comment leaves no doubt that you are a complete loser — and on behalf of all New Yorkers, please return back to the hole from which you emerged. Why read the Westside Rag if you are such a moron and NY hater? Go home. Get out. Return to your mediocre, scummy (no doubt middle American) roots. Buh-bye.
How is the snobbish contempt and disdain for “Middle America” that you expressed any better than the insult of New York City that you were replying-to? Both seem pretty “small” to me.
I just love that “hoards” of people were running out. LOL. I think they were probably “hordes” of people, but you never know. Maybe they were all hiding something in the subway station…
So “unruly passenger” = guy with a gun pointing it at people. Welcome to the NYPD’s unintentionally hilarious glossary. If he had started shooting would unruly be upgraded to “anti-social?”
was there a guy with a gun? “There were Transit units already on scene and there was no evidence of anyone actually possessing a gun.” Maybe the unruly passenger was the person yelling about a non-existent gun.
What a bunch of over reactors we are in this country/city! People were crying??? Geez
@ Ron: That’s why there are no tolls leaving the city. Don’t forget to write and send money when you can…
I was there too. I didn’t hear any “pops”. The arrivals board indicated the #1 train was coming into the station, but then it didn’t; the people looking back down the tunnel started looking upset. Suddenly, people were running like crazy, knocking down and running over anyone who got in their way. Absolutely terrifying on many levels. By the time I got upstairs, about 4-5 police cars had pulled up and the officers were entering the station as I left it. Nobody seemed to know what was going on.