Train related deaths

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Matthyro, Aug 25, 2003.

  1. Matthyro

    Matthyro Will always be re-membered

    Recently there have been two deaths in the Georgetown area. The first was a 24 year old young man who after a party was seen lying on the track under an overpass around 5 am. The CN engineer sounded the horn but couldn't stop the train in time.
    A few days later a 35-40 year old woman was struck by a CN train a couple of miles away from the first one. She had no ID on her but was wearing a wedding ring. These deaths were unrelated.
    I feel for the poor engineers in cases like this.
  2. Clerk

    Clerk Active Member

    I agree Robin. I feel for the Engrs more than the victims. The Engrs had no recoarse but the others did.

    UP_STEVE Member

    same, the engineer does all he can to stop the train, but it takes time to stop all that weight, i wouldnt wish that feeling of helplessness on anyone
  4. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

    Too bad everyone else doesn't realize how long it takes them to stop. Playing chicken with a train isn't a sport, it's suicide. :(

    This reminds me of a story a friend told me many years ago. He was a breakman with UP I believe. There was a bull on the track and as the train approched he decided to "defend his territory" and charged the train head on. My friend said that when it hit they didn't feel a thing.
  5. Clerk

    Clerk Active Member

    Clark. I know how you felt. Back in the late 50's I hitched a ride in the cab of a SP F7. I was standing between the Engineer and Fireman watching the track dissappear under the engine when the engineer yelled."Hey! you dumb cow, get the h-ll if the track. A few seconds later the engineer complained "Dam cow. Now I got cow sh-t all over the front end". The fireman and I couldn't help but bust out laughing. I guess the Engineer was in a bad mood then because when it was time for me to get off, he slowed down a little but not enough. When I jumped off I did a double sumersault on the ground before I could get stopped. I guess he got the last laugh that time. It took several minutes to find my bag as it flew several yards away. My wife was expecting me and was watching from the window when I jumped and did my stunt. When I walked in the door I caught it again. She couldn't stop laughing.
  6. csxengineer

    csxengineer Member

    I see it everyday

    I could go on for hours about all the deaths we see / or hear about, and I've only been there 4 years. In Ohio, there is now lights and gates at every public crossing, as an effort to eliminate accidents, yet the moronic public still goes around the gates.

    I almost killed an amish guy and his horse a few years back when his horse froze on the tracks. I tried turning the lights off, etc, and yelled "You can get another horsey! Get off". At 60 mph, we weren't going to stop in time.

    They moved just in time, or I'd been selling Elmer's glue on Ebay cheap!

    Its not like we swerve to hit people.
  7. mhdishere

    mhdishere Member

    I saw an almost-accident one day on my way to work. I take a commuter train, and to get from the parking lot to the platform you have to cross the tracks. People must think I'm crazy because I always check both directions before I cross, but anyway, I digress. One day last winter this woman was sitting in her car keeping warm, and when the train came she got out and strolled to the tracks, picked her way across a puddle, then when the train was maybe 200 feet from her made a mad dash across the tracks, tripped on the ballast and fell on the tracks. She managed to drag herself onto the platform before she got nailed, and all of her fellow commuters lined up to make sure she was OK and then tell her not to do that again, it's too early in the morning to see someone get smeared.

    One time an earlier train did hit someone who was walking on the tracks. The newspaper the next day said they were still determining the cause of death. I'd put my money on blunt-force trauma.
  8. Peirce

    Peirce Member

    I volunteer as a tour guide at the Danbury Railway Museum. It surprised me how many times, when my tour is in the cab of our E9, that I am asked, "How do you steer this thing." It is not always kids that are doing the asking. So, I can imaging some Darwin Award candidate assuming the train will swerve to miss him/her.
  9. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Clerks cow story remains of the time I worked on the C&O(Chessie).We was coming out of a branch that served a coal mine.I heard the engineer stay get off the tracks deer(I thought he was calling a woman "dear")till I looked up-alright so I was nodding off, :eek: and saw it was the four legged kind of deer,the engineer sounded the horns..Just has we was just about to have grounded deer meat the deer had other thoughts and hop of the track just in time,stop turns and looked and then calmly walks away as if nothing happen.
  10. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    My Dad used to tell of the neighbor's goat, that liked the grass that grew between the rails of the Harlem division of the NYC, back in the days of steam power............................. I'll let your imagination fill in the details;)
  11. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Some years ago, we were GOing into Toronto and were stopped at Bloor street. Another GO train was coming the opposite direction a couple of tracks over, and, very unusually, was blowing its horn. It stopped close to ours and the crews talked a bit. We then moved slowly on and stopped shortly, where there was a body lying beside the track. My wife saw a frantic dog on the far side of the right of way.
    This was a woman who was having an early morning walk of her dog, up the railroad tracks.
    At that point there were five tracks, and in a few minutes four trains used them, and only one stopped at the station.
  12. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

    The stories of near misses reminds me of one I had myself. I was on my way to visit the friend I mentiond and had to cross the tracks to get to his house.
    This was in Carlin NV which is a yard where crews were regularly switched. There were 5 or 6 tracks to cross and it wasn't unusual to have a train setting a dozen or so yards from the crossing, waiting to leave. This, however caused the signals to activate (just lights, no gates). We would always stop to determin if they were about to start or if there was time to cross.
    I had several friends with me and as usual I stopped and waited for a minute to see what was hapening. There didn't seem to be any imminent activity so I started across the tracks.
    The standing train was on the next to last tracks we had to cross and just as we started across the first track a freight train came barreling through on the last track, hidden by the standing train. I swear it was doing 60mph although I'm sure it was less than that since it was going through a yard. Still, it was fast enough that if we hadn't waited, there wouldn't have been much left of the car or us. None of us heard any horns or whistles. It was just an angel on our shoulders that made me wait as long as I did. We crossed those tracks hundreds of times and were careful each time. But after that we were even more careful.
  13. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    As far as close calls I have more then a few when I was a brakeman..There is no sound like slack being ran in or out when you are between the cars connecting a air hose.

    The closest I ever came to being hurt or killed was when I worked on the PRR.We was running east bound on the westbound main in order to switch a industry.This we had permission to to from the High Street tower-man and backed by permission from the DS...I glance over toward the fireman and I saw his face go deathly white and he said aw S***. and yell ON COMING TRAIN!!!!!!! We was about 30 car lengths from the cross over that we just use to crossover to the west bound main and moving slow,the engineer,wipe the clock and stopped the train,The fireman jump up grab my switch keys that I was fumbling with and ran out of the cab and hit the ground running,The engineer ask me if he had the switches yet,I was about to say no when I saw the switch target change colors and I yelled back 'em up! By this time the rear man had jump off of the cabin car and threw the other switch,I looked and the on coming train was closing fast,the engineer slam the throttle in run 8 in reverse,we cleared the crossover and the fireman line and locked the switch the on coming train was about 35-40 cars lengths away and was finally slowing down.Luck rode the rails that day,as we had 7 cars including the cabin..Had we had the normal length train we would have never made it into the clear..

    Needless to say we was shaken up by this near accident.I was especially shook up as this was my first real close call..The tower-man had forgot to cross the westbound train over to the eastbound main so he could run around us.Why he was not paying attention to his tower board never came out during the investigation.
  14. zeeglen

    zeeglen Member

    This heresay incident happened long ago, I heard it as a teen. What a terrible way to die.

    A railroad yard worker crossed between two cars just as the locomotive backed them to couple. He was crushed between the couplers but was still alive and conscious. The doctor knew as soon as the cars pulled apart to free him he would bleed to death. All they could do for him was summon his wife for a final goodbye.
  15. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Glen,That was not uncommon in the early years of railroading..
    The family's of brakemen,conductors, switchmen and hump riders would keep a new sheet in the event that dreaded knock on the door would come telling them that their husband or son has been killed in the yard..
  16. jawatkins

    jawatkins Member

    Just yesterday, here in Dallas, a lady in a Ford Explorer was killed when the Dart (Dallas Area Rapid Transit) Train hit her at 30-35 mph. From the new report on the radio, the witnesses said she went around the crossing gates and the train plowed into her.

    I guess we'll never know what was so important that you would risk your life for.
  17. zeeglen

    zeeglen Member

  18. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

    A most inspiring tale. Many thanks for the post.
  19. Lighthorseman

    Lighthorseman Active Member


    On a related note - Just watch folks in traffic in general. If one is readily willing to risk their life (not to mention the lives of those in the vehicle as well) by running lights, speeding, and all sorts of generally nutty behaviour, all in the name of saving 15 seconds of time...just to get to the next red light earlier...why shouldn't they do something as completely looney as trying to beat a train?

    I surely hope that I haven't gone and started a bad-driver spin to this thread, because those ones NEVER seem to come to an end! :rolleyes:
  20. belg

    belg Member

    I have a friend who works for the railroad which is better left unnamed, He was in the process of training a new recruit after I believe his second week of training they came back into the yard as the fellow exited the cab it was pouring rain and he slipped ,unfortunately there was a second train exiting and ran over both his legs. Not a pretty site and caused my friend many months of anguish and guilt ridden feeling.

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