Traffic police Tan Qiao had just boarded the subway at Nijiaqiao station shortly before 10:30 Tuesday morning when he heard a scream, and the train suddenly stopped.
There was a commotion in another car. Quick-thinking Tan pulled out his mobile phone, ready to snap a photo.
When he arrived at the other car, he found a girl, estimated to be 7 or 8 years old and wearing glasses, inside the train while her hand was outside the train, her wrist squeezed in between the closed doors.
The girl was screaming, and her mother was standing next to her, sobbing. The rest of the passengers didn't know what to do. But Hero Tan ran directly to the doors and pulled with all his might. Still they did not budge. He called to the rest of the passengers, "Everybody, come help! Help crack open the doors!"
With the help of two male passengers nearby, Tan was able to wedge his hand in between the rubber seals of the doors, making a crack large enough for the girl to pull her hand through.
Hero Tan left the scene without asking the girl her name or contact information. But by 10:41 he had published a firsthand account of the event to his Sina Weibo microblogging account.
Netizens followed the Weibo posts with interest, some praising Tan's quick action and others wondering why he paused to take a photo before helping the girl.
Tan is something of a hobbyist Weibo public-transportation reporter and says he takes the subway to and from work just so that he can report on the journey live.
He added that the train conductor immediately stopped the train to ensure that the girl was OK before returning to the route.
The Chengdu Metro Corp. stated that the doors of the train where the event took place have been inspected after the incident and passed safety tests. Investigation showed that the passenger put her hand through the doors as they were closing. The trains are installed with cameras that allow the driver to see if the doors meet any obstacles while they are closing. Additionally, all cars are equipped with emergency buttons that can be used in the case of such events.
The girl was left with a bruised wrist, but escaped with no injuries. She was allegedly reaching out to her father, who was on the platform at the time of the incident.