I haven't seen the movie but the locomotive is a celebrity, famous for
it, with a number that is easy to remember - CSX 8888.
I used to be a member of the Kingston Model Railway Club in New York,
and on club nights we used to listen on a scanner and go out to watch
the trains go by.
When 8888 passed by on a freight one of the guys remarked it and when
I asked him, told me the story.
Saw it today. Great thing is that there's train action in about 90%
of the movie; not a whole lot of off-the-rails scenes. It kept the
adrenaline pumping, even though some bits pushed the credulity to the edge.
: Saw it today. Great thing is that there's train action in about 90%
: of the movie; not a whole lot of off-the-rails scenes. It kept the
: adrenaline pumping, even though some bits pushed the credulity to the edge.
I was amused that the airhose was connected between 1206 and
the train at some point. Plus your typical continuity problems.
Amazing the front of 777 wasn't damaged towards the end, after
the havoc 777 raised. :-)
Also, what was 777? It looked like a SD79MAC? And 1206 looked
to be a low hood GP30? I think I know who will win a tug of war.
Aside from that, I thought it was a remake of "Runaway
Train", minus the need to capture a couple of prisoners.
Anyway, as suspected, this story heavily embellished the actual event
it was based on. So many people see the words "based on a true story"
and take it to mean it's what happened....but it's not.
In the REAL story it was a CSX yard switcher with a single SD40-2 #
8888. After the incident nickmamed the Crazy 8's.
I believe the loco that chased it was also an SD40's. In the real
event, they did PLAN to run some locos out ahead of the runaway train,
but in the end didn't have to because the chase train caught it and
slowed it enough that a CSX trainmaster could jump about and shut the
Speaking of which...this movie shows the engine's throttle advancing
by itself after the engineer got off to run ahead and line the switch.
In the real event, the engineer thought he'd put the dynamic brake in
number 8 but had instead put the throttle in number 8 before he got
off. I would suspect that possibly this SD40-2 may have had a control
stand which did not have a seperate dynamic brake handle, but rather a
selector handle for power/dynamic braking, and a single combined
throttle/braking handle. Otherwise, I don't know how he could
possibly have thought it was in dynamic braking, considering the units
with a seperate handle have a dynamic brake handle that moves in the
complete opposite direction from throttle power. Also, all SD40-2's
that I know of are conventional control stands not desktiops like the
AC4400CW used in this movie.
I had to laugh when I saw "Randy" (reference: My Name Is Earl), jump
off to line a switch that was already lined properly. In the real
event the engineer was about to split a switch, but in this movie the
switch was lined properly. I don't know why they didn't do that
realistically...they could have had the track department standing by
to fix it as soon as it was split, if it happened. It only takes a
few minutes to replace the spindle in a split switch.
I'm kinda curious as to why they chose to paint 777 and it's companion
to look almost like a Santa Fe engine. I wonder if CSX insisted it
not look anything like any of their family of paint schemes?
I didn't pay a lot of attention at the end of the movie, but one of
the photos above certainly shows some damage on 777.