The victim, Tamar A. Louis, of Stamford, was killed the day before her 29th birthday, according to Metro-North spokesman Salvatore Arena.
"She was apparently sitting on the edge of the platform, with her legs dangling over the side, when she dropped her purse or bag, then lowered herself down to get it," said Arena, citing eyewitness accounts. "We're not sure why she dropped the bag. ...
"Then the train comes, and she's down there when she shouldn't be," he said.
Louis was hit and killed by a New Haven-bound express train that was not due to stop in Cos Cob. Metro-North officials estimate that it was traveling 45 mph when the accident occurred at about 9:30 a.m. Friday.
As any express train travels through a station without stopping, it sounds its horn, Arena said.
"An express train, it's not stopping," he said. "They're gonna hit that horn."
It is not clear how far the train was from the Cos Cob station when Louis went onto the tracks, he said.
"It could not have been far," Arena said.
The train was the express 8:29 a.m. out of Grand Central Terminal headed for New Haven, said spokeswoman Meredith Daniels.
After the accident, the passengers aboard were transferred to another train and were on their way shortly after 10 a.m., Daniels said.
MTA and Greenwich police were at the scene and investigating the fatal accident throughout Friday. Metro-North said its investigation was continuing this weekend about how and why Louis ended up on the tracks.
Daniels said employees on the train would receive counseling and were relieved from duty for the day after they finished talking to police. They are eligible to receive up to three days off work under MTA's policies, she said.
At least two other people have been killed after being struck by trains this year in Fairfield County.
On March 29, a Waterbury woman was struck and killed by an Amtrak train at the Fairfield Metro-North station. Officials said they believed she ran across the tracks while trying to cross to the platform on the opposite side.
On May 27, a 32-year-old Bridgeport man was killed after lying down in front of a Metro-North train. His death also occurred near the Fairfield Metro train station.
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