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Train Wreck

7195 Views 17 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  neil_s_wood
Just seen on the news tonight a train wreck in Victoria, Australia, near lismore. Seem a semitrailer struck a container train and the resulting pile up took about 40 cars and couple of locos off the rails. Unfortunately the semi driver didn't survive and it appears that the cab of his truck is buried so deeply it may take a few days to recover his body. This happened on a level crossing with only lights for protection, no warning bells or gates and it happened in fog. Train was carring bottles of wine, grain and a few other items.

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If one lesson needs learning, and SHOULD have been learned donkey's years ago, it is that rail crossings without barriers ALWAYS lead to an accident and likely death, sooner or later. Lack of protection in such obvious and seriously high risk sitations is criminally irresponsible.
There was another one not that long ago in Victoria, I think it was near Ballarat where people were killed. It happens so often here. Even in Melbourne which is a city of over three million there are loads of level crossings. Problem is local councils will not pay extra money to build rail bridges. There are huge tailbacks in traffic everyday ar rush hour as miles and miles of cars have to wait as the commuter trains come through every four or five minutes. I have to drive through loads of these every day. These at least have a barrier and lights because you're in a city but in the country there's often nothing. These are an all too frequent occurence.
In the UK we have a safety advert which has just started running on TV warning drivers of the effect of not obeying warning lights or barriers at level crossings. It shows the aftermath of an incident (I refuse to call deliberate negligence of warning signals an accident) with the emergency services picking up the pieces. Personally I don't think it is graphic enough - it does not actually show the moment of impact.

John Webb
Sometime recently in Oz a steam special was in collision with an articulated truck (road train?) and the footplate crew were killed. Does anyone have an update on the fate of the loco?

Check out this news item from yesterday's Autoexpess website. The photos which accompany the article are something else! The driver doesn't look like your average sub-25 tearaway either:

Three wheels on my wagon...

Interesting crash that. He was one lucky bugger. I have noticed that in the interests of safety many rail crossings here in NSW and Qld that had full width gates, lights and bells now only have a sign. Up near Dungog on the north coast line there was a accident with the Sydney to Brisbane XPT on a crossing. An elderly couple crossed directly in the path of the oncoming XPT which was doing around 150kph. Needless to say the killed and the driver and his 2nd man are still in therapy. A picture was published showing the crossing in the early sixties, when steam was still running, with fullwidth gates, lights and bells. These were removed in the early seventies in the interests of safety, read maintenance, as the number of trains using the route had diminshed substantially. I wonder what the workcover report really said and what is the SRA, State Sail Authority, duty of care to it's employees and and the public.

How did he fail to notice the sprinter admittidly the gate wasnt barred but he should have payed attention to the lights and evne if he decided to make a dash for it he still should have looked up and down the line does anyone know what happened to him after this incident?
There have been a number of accidents in Australia like this over the last few years. It seems to be a combination of no gates on a crossing, long goods trains and presumably half awake car/truck drivers. At night the only lights are at the loco, there's nothing along the length of the train and they are often very long trains.
There has been a campaign that goods trains should show lights on the sides of the wagons but I wouldn't have thought that would be cheap.

Bungendore, NSW
Even retro reflective tape or similar may be of assistance in illuminating the sides of the vans
QUOTE (dwb @ 25 May 2006, 22:16) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Check out this news item from yesterday's Autoexpess website. The photos which accompany the article are something else! The driver doesn't look like your average sub-25 tearaway either:

Three wheels on my wagon...

It could just be the angle of the camera but I can't see any warning lights flashing on the crossing I would've thought something would've been visible.
The latest edition of 'The Railway Magazine' announces that the Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway (15inch gauge) is to fit several of its level crossings with barriers following various incidents in recent years of people ignoring lights - in two cases the drivers of the locomotives died. Why can't people use a little common-sense, I wonder?
John Webb
People think that because they Locos are only on 15 inch Gauge and smaller than their cars that the train will inflict hardly any damage to their car
The Leighton and Buzzard has a similar problem because people think the train will inflict little damage on their cars BIG mistake
I saw on Tv a while ago a Bentley Driver weaved through the gap of a Barriers level crossing and the moment it left the crossing a HST went through at high speed I could only shudder to think what would have happened if he had been slightly slower
You will please to know the camera caught his registration plate and he suspended from driving because of dangerous driving and endangering lives
Also I saw some statistics and apparently the biggest cause of Railway Related death in the USA is from people in cars on level crossings
on another program a family in America parked on a railway line and had a picnic! When the police told them to move they refused and well the were spread over a mile of railway later
How can people be this stupid!
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QUOTE (dwb @ 25 May 2006, 23:16) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Check out this news item from yesterday's Autoexpess website. The photos which accompany the article are something else! The driver doesn't look like your average sub-25 tearaway either:

Three wheels on my wagon...


Silly old bloke:

If they used the money that they spent on the video cameras on some simple automatic barriers, this wouldn't have happened.
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Well yes there is that arguement Doug. That would imply a bit of sense though and there is precious little of that in this country and seemingly not just from the youth of it either. Its a worrying video but nothing compared to school minibuses playing chicken or other supposed professional drivers in lorries and vans running through the barriers. Of course the cost of putting barriers on the crossing will've trebled since the accident happened so its going to have to be a bridge or just close the railway line.
The only lvel crossing I can think of anywhere near where I live still has the old type gates on it although there hasn't been a track for years never mind a train.
Yesterday there was a goods train derailment at Benalla in Victoria's north-east.

Nineteen of the train's 34 wagons came off the track.

XPT train services between Melbourne and Sydney have been replaced by buses.

Also the other day two trains in QLD derailed in separate incidents.

Looks like derailment isn't just a problem railway modellers have.
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