With the Murwillumbah Train and Hobby Show back on again this year in August, I decided to show you something that happened with the Darling Downs Model Railway Club Inc. N Scale DualTraiN layout at the last show they held in 2004.

E8's appear on the sceneJust prior to the closing of the Murwillumbah Train and Hobby Show on the Saturday night, a slight altercation occurred on the MurWINnumbah modules of the DDMRC’s DualtraiN modular layout.

The derailment of a freight train had happened, when this was spotted, a following freight was eased into the platform track and held.

Read More

E8 on it's side after accidentRussell got out his trusty digital camera and set himself up to take a photo. No one had remembered the opposing track though, and three Union Pacific E units with some 39 passenger cars in tow appeared in the viewfinder just as Russell snapped the shot.

 The people at the Maudsley Markets must have been horrified as next thing the big E8’s, brakes squealing plowed into the overturned boxcar and hopper.

 The lead unit overturned and lay on its side, perilously close to the edge of the layout, the second unit, an E8 ‘B’, derailed but remained upright, the rest of the train fortunately remained intact and no injuries were reported.

SP caboose on it's side. Russell then turned his camera onto the just happened melee and snapped the resultant shot shown here.

Of course, while all this drama was unfolding, everyone had forgotten about another train, headed by a Life-Like Santa Fe GP-20 that Ben Dunlop had only just purchased coming in behind the stricken freight. The smaller EMD unit with a relatively short train knocked the Southern Pacific caboose with enough impact to roll it and the SOO LINE boxcar in front of it off the track, coming to rest with its nose firmly implanted between another SOO LINE boxcar and the train on the parallel track.

But wait! There’s more!

Box cars everywhere. With everyone’s interest firmly implanted on the crisis that had jus occurred, the three EMD SD40-2’s of the original derailed train that started it all, devoid of the burden of the weight of their train, had arrive back on scene at the rear of the train at an unprecedented speed, everyone unaware of the further impending doom about to take place.

 Too late Ethel! As someone spotted the speeding locomotives round the bend and plow into the rear of the GP20’s now stationary train.

Surprisingly, only the lead unit left the tracks as it plowed its merry way through several freight cars, overturning and concertinaing them as it went.

Wood reefers succumb to the impact. On the adjacent track, the fragile old wood reefers succumbed to the impact, one rolling over between the station platform and water tower, one shunted off into the boondocks and the SD40-2 skewed sideways around the water tank (not a drop of water was spilled from the tank, and passengers on the platform were untouched).

Of course, as can be seen, another SOO LINE boxcar was involved (herein lies another story).

Emergency vehicles were quick to respond. The Circus Parade in the main street of MurWINnumbah had come to an abrupt halt during the mishap as bewildered onlookers couldn’t believe the series of events unfolding in front of their very eyes.

Emergency vehicles were quickly on the scene, and much to everyone’s relief, there were only injuries to a few DDMRC members pride. The accident, as seen here, except for the emergency vehicles, was not staged, it occurred as stated.

No plastic people or  animals were subjected to any mistreatment or suffering in the above described incident. Minor damage occurred to a couple of the locomotives.

Original Stroy by Teditor, Photographs by Russell Hartwig.

A short video of the the last three loco's to hit the accident scene has also been placed in the downloads section of the website under Movies.