NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) - A 10-year-old is recovering after a CSX train in Newport News cut off his leg. WAVY.com obtained the 911 call that may have saved his life.
Dispatch: Are they okay sir?
James Slater: No. I think someone's screaming. Oh no. Oh my God. He's lost his leg.
Dispatch: What?! Amputation on a leg. I've got to get this. Hold on a second, sir.
Click here to listen to the entire 911 phone call.
The accident happened Sunday afternoon along Bellwood Road. Police say Jahmee Harris tried to jump onto a moving train, but lost his grip and fell onto the tracks.
The amazing thing about what is said on those tapes is that a neighbor, James Slater, had the foresight to realize the danger the children were possibly in, so he called 911. It was while he was already on the phone with dispatch that tragedy struck.
Slater says the child was one of a group of kids playing a game at these railroad tracks in the South Rivermont neighborhood.
"They jump on it and they hang," Slater said. "They don't even pick their feet up they just hang and they go down a couple hundred yards and they let go."
Sunday, Slater says Harris lost his grip, fell onto the tracks and the CSX train rolled over his leg.
"It was like right below the knee," Slater said. "It was like shin area. It was something you would see in a horror movie."
Slater says the children with Harris and his family were devastated.
"Awful, awful screams and tears and they're all running down saying he lost his leg," Slater said.
Harris is at Children's Hospital of the King's Daughters in Norfolk. A spokesperson says doctors were not able to reattach his leg.
A family member of Harris turned to Twitter to talk about the accident saying, "Hope my little cousin's doing okay. He got his leg cut off by a train. Pray for my family 'cuz we can't catch a break."
CSX spokesman Bob Sullivan tells WAVY.com the train company is cooperating with the police investigation. He emphasizes how sad he is for Harris and his family and he says this incident illustrates, "Railroads are not places for people to play. As we unfortunately saw yesterday, it's an environment where people can get hurt."
Police say Harris is from Hampton and was visiting his aunt in Newport News. He is a 5th grader at Hunter B. Andrews Pre-K through 8 school. A spokesperson tells WAVY.com counselors were on hand, Monday, in case his friends needed help dealing with the accident.
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