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MTA conductor performs lifesaving CPR on subway, agency says

Kevin Bartsch, 50, a subway conductor and former EMT in a Long Island fire department, said his “training just took over.”

Subway conductor Kevin Bartsch, of Nissequogue, who performed

Subway conductor Kevin Bartsch, of Nissequogue, who performed lifesaving CPR on a passenger during his route last week. Photo Credit: Jessica Rotkiewicz

A subway conductor helped save an unresponsive passenger last week while on his route, MTA officials said.

Kevin Bartsch, 50, was a conductor on Wednesday on a southbound F train that was stopped at the Jackson Heights-Roosevelt Avenue station in Queens when passengers ran to his window.

A man was slumped over in his seat. Bartsch, who had been a volunteer EMT for the Nissequogue Fire Department on Long Island, went to check and noticed the passenger wasn’t breathing and his lips had turned blue.

He brought the man to the ground and immediately started CPR, performing chest compressions for about five minutes before he was joined by an EMT for the MTA who was posted at the station, the agency said.

“It all happened so fast,” Bartsch said. “The training just took over.”

Bartsch continued to rhythmically push down on the man’s chest as the EMT readied an AED. But the man regained consciousness before they could use the defibrillator, and “became combative,” Bartsch said.

“He jumped off the floor and tried to push the EMT back down,” Bartsch said. “I was telling him, ‘You just died. You need to relax and listen to what I’m telling you.’ ”

The passenger was taken to NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst in Queens, the FDNY said. Bartsch then went back to the rest of his rush-hour route, he said.

“We are in awe of Kevin’s bravery, quick thinking and the action he undertook to save a rider’s life,” said MTA spokesman Jon Weinstein.


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