"As he was exiting the train the doors closed while his service dog was still inside," his daughter wrote.
A man was killed at Dunn Loring Station in Fairfax County on February 15 after a dog leash that was tied to him got stuck in the metro door. The metro rider has been identified by his daughter Olivia Stark as 50-year-old Harold Riley. He got off the train around 1:30 p.m. but his dog Daisy could not exit with him. As the train began moving, the man was not able to free himself from the leash, according to a report, per Washington Examiner.
"This obstruction caused the individual to be dragged on the platform and onto the tracks," Metro Transit Police for the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority said on Twitter after performing a preliminary investigation into the incident.
50-year-old Harold Riley was killed after his dog's leash got stuck in the doors of a Metro train. His daughters told News4 the dog is a service animal. https://t.co/nTrIyIj2dd pic.twitter.com/gBPfJsRIm5— NBC4 Washington (@nbcwashington) February 16, 2023
His daughter has created a GoFundMe campaign, where she wrote, "Hi, My name is Olivia. We tragically lost my father today in a train accident. As he was exiting the train the doors closed while his service dog was still inside. The train took off and my father was taken with it. We want to raise money to be able to have a nice service and have him cremated. My father loved his grandchildren and his dog more than anything and he was such an amazing 'PanPaw'. God bless!" As of the evening of February 16, the campaign has raised over $1,500 of its $3,000 goal.
Daisy did not appear to have any identification tag, but Riley's family said she was his service dog, according to the report. The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority has mentioned in its customer guide that service animals are allowed in their vehicles as long as they are under a passenger's control at all times and do not sit on a metro bus seat. Following the incident, Daisy was taken into police care but was picked up by Stark shortly after and found a new home with an adoptive family, according to PEOPLE.
They further said that video taken from the train station shows that the incident occurred approximately 450 feet from the operator's cab as Riley stepped on the platform. He became separated from Daisy after the doors closed and Daisy's leash was stuck in the metro door.
UPDATE: Unfortunately the adult male individual was pronounced deceased after being transported to the hospital. The investigation is ongoing. Continue to follow @metrorailinfo and @metrobusinfo for service updates. #wmata— Metro Transit Police (@MetroTransitPD) February 15, 2023
Riley was dragged by the train down the platform and on the tracks, Metro Transit Police said. The Metro Transit Police added in their report from their preliminary investigation that the train operator performed two safe-door checks before moving the train, per Washington Examiner. The Police also made all attempts to save Riley with lifesaving measures, and then he was rushed to a local hospital, where he was declared dead, per PEOPLE.
A report shared by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority on their website shows that out of 12 incidents reported between July and December 2022, four involved people being struck by trains, per PEOPLE.
Another Metro report from May mentioned 86 riders were injured in the first nine months of the fiscal year 2022, according to NBC Washington.
Cover Image Source: GoFundMe