03/21/2014 11:49 EDT | Updated 05/21/2014 05:59 EDT

Passengers pry Metro doors open to save elderly rider

A man who saw the doors of a Montreal Metro car close on an elderly woman’s head yesterday afternoon says an STM employee yelled at him and other passengers for pulling the emergency brake.

Michael Bramadat-Willcock was getting onto the Metro green line at Guy-Concordia station between 12 and 1 p.m. Thursday when a woman who was exiting got her head caught in the door.

“As the woman was trying to leave the Metro, the doors slammed shut… on her head,” Bramadat-Willcock said in an interview with CBC News.

“About 12 people I guess were standing around the door, myself included, all grabbed the doors to try to pull them open. Instead of just opening, the doors continued to try and close as we’re all pulling on the doors to try and stop them from crushing her head,” he continued.

He said at least a full minute passed before the doors released the woman, who he described as frail, from its clutches.

Bramadat-Willcock said he yelled for someone to pull the emergency brake on the train to prevent it from leaving the station.

The last thing he expected, he said, was for an STM employee to come into the car and yell at the passengers for pulling the lever.

“What I thought was kind of disturbing as well was, when the driver came in the back, she didn’t come to ask what had happened. She came to complained that we pulled the emergency lever,” he said.

Bramadat-Willcock said he tried to contact the STM to report the incident, but their offices were closed at the time.

The STM told CBC News that it is looking into the matter.