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UPDATED: Person dies after being dragged by Metro train in Dunn Loring

A Dunn Loring-Merrifield Metro station platform shelter (staff photo by Angela Woolsey)

(Updated at 4:55 p.m.) A man has died after being pulled by a Metro train at the Dunn Loring station this afternoon, prompting a suspension of service between Vienna and West Falls Church.

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority’s Rail Operations Control Center and Transit Police Department received a report shortly before 1:30 p.m. that a person was being dragged by a train.

“Despite lifesaving measures, unfortunately the adult male individual was pronounced deceased after being transported to the hospital,” a Metro spokesperson said. “The investigation is in its early stages, but preliminarily it appears that an item being carried by the individual became caught in the train doors before it departed the station, dragging the individual down the platform.”

Shuttle buses and  Metrobus routes 28A and 2B can also be used as alternate travel options were offered as alternate travel options until train service between the Vienna and West Falls Church stations was restored around 2:50 p.m.

The Orange and Silver lines also briefly switched to single-tracking between Ballston and Clarendon in Arlington.

Confirming social media reports that the man’s dog was found on a train at the West Falls Church station, Metro Transit Police say the man was holding the dog’s leash, which was the “item” that got caught in the train doors.

“The deceased cleared the platform and was on the platform away from the car, but upon closer review, a leash appears to be tied to the person, which was unfortunately caught in the door, leaving the dog with no ID inside of the car,” the police department said. “This obstruction caused the individual to be dragged on the platform and onto the tracks.”

The dog is now being taken care of by police, the department says, which noted that the pet “does not appear to be a service animal.”

WMATA only allows pets other than service animals on trains and buses if they’re “carried aboard in a secure container from which it cannot escape.”

According to police, surveillance video showed that the man was about 450 feet away from the train’s cab, and the train operator made two “safe door checks” before starting the vehicle.

The Washington Metrorail Safety Commission says it has launched an investigation into the incident.

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