Don't have any photos, but I've seen a couple of real beauties...
"Best" was one on an N track layout. The set-up yard was in the center,
fed by a "T" module that allowed traffic to cross from the outside line to
the center line, then into the yard. The crossings were all at grade, AND
PROTECTED BY WORKING SIGNALS [ :P""""" ]. A long drag freight was making
the transition from outside to inside track then into the yard, and all
other lines had red signals. A 500 class Shikansen (a bullet train with a
VERY low nose...) was running on the center line. The Shikansen engineer
got distracted and he blew the red signal, T-boning the freight. Boxcars
went flying, one almost 2 feet high!
Another took out 4 trains at once:
N-Track layout again, multiple trains running on each track. Center line
passenger train had a derailment, had to stop to fix it. The end of the
train was _just_ around a corner, and not visible from the preceding
straight. Trains on the inside and outside lines were passing in the
opposite direction, when another long passenger train _also_ running on
the center line came around the corner and hit the first. The first train
promptly "accordian-ed", passenger cars derailing in alternating
directions... and knocking BOTH passing trains off the tracks, one of
which (a long coal drag) toppled like dominoes and ended up with most of
the train on its side. Too bad there's no good way to put out a flare in N
Both of these happened just after the club in question had switched from
analog to digital control, and the engineers had not yet gotten used to
1) You can (and SHOULD) follow your train around the layout (Most of us
need the exercise anyway...) No sitting in the "tower" with a throttle (or
3) and yakking away while your train runs...
2) You actually have to PAY ATTENTION to what's going on around you when
there's more than one train on the track.
From the web link: "It's totally impossible to have a head on collision
like this using DC." Not true, not true at all. :-) At my old club's
layout, we had the exact same thing happen to us. A train was stopped at
the signal (and block break) in a siding. Coming the other way was a
passenger train on the straight. Well, somebody forgot to through the
switch, and the passenger train took the siding at high speed and nailed the
waiting train head on. Now, it was the only head on collision that I can
recall that happened on our old DC layout, but it did happen. I heard the
crunch and helped pick up the pieces.
And on our DCC layout, head ons are the problem, rear enders are. Folks
not paying attention is what it amounts to.
Paul A. Cutler III
Weather Or No Go New Haven
The wreck was about 1952 if I remember the article correctly.
The use of DCC has some great features, but this is the first time anyone
has stated collisions on a model railroad do exist.
Up hill slow, down hill fast, tonnage first, safety last.
Someone here once observed in the past year or so that DCC lets you manage the
train and not the power supply to the tracks. When the conversion is done, that
fact needs to be driven home to the engineers - power's on all the time, boys!
website URL: members.aol.com/orphantrainlocos/index.html
All the world's a stage - and everybody's a critic.
I just put up a page about a possible train wreck that could happen
using DCC. Come on you guy, fess up if you ever had one. I don't mean as
bad a one your about to see.
had to do this because of all the bantering lately. The main about the
hobby is what?
I like the photos and the story, Phil. Keep up the good work!
Bill's Railroad Empire
N Scale Model Railroad:
We have had mishaps during train shows especially since moving to digital
control with more than one train per track. One club member is so prone to
distraction that we have dubbed him "Krash" and he now has a new gold-plated
name tag of which he is quite proud. :)
I had that, except I was driving the passenger train.
Club layout (DCC) is single track main line with passing sidings.
My loco, another members dismal with video camera, was running around
with most members watching the TV screen when, as I came around a
sharp bend, we saw a long freight train which had not waited in the
passing siding coming under the bridge and around the bend ---
Oh S... ! Crunch.
Fortunately there was no damage, unfortunately we were not
recording. Will have to repeat with the recorder running.
in beautiful Golden Bay, Western Oz, South 32.25.42, East 115.45.44 GMT+8
VK6 YAB ICQ 6581610 to reply, change oz to au in address
Reminds me of an embarassing moment I had some years ago as a guest at a HO
model RR club layout in the SF Bay area. Big layout, DC power, and we were
running four or five trains at the same time as well as yard ops. Track
control was informal, but there was a "chief dispatcher" regulating our
movement into and out of each block.
I was in charge of a freight, it had something like an SD-40 on the
point...Olympic commerative paint scheme, I think, about fifteen cars in
trail. Things were starting to get backed up approaching the main yard, as
there were two trains ahead of me on the main line. My instructions were to
stop two blocks ahead of the yard entrance, just infront of a signal.
Problem was, this signal was just outside a tunnel after a downgrade...on
the other side of the layout from the cab I was sitting in.
I was standing up, peering over the scenery looking for the nose of that
locomotive to emerge from the tunnel, prepared to stop about two lengths
after it exited. A moment later, the SD-40 emerged from the tunnel, and I
remember thinking, "Ok...we'll stop right about there..." and closing the
throttle. But instead of stopping, the train started accellerating. Turns
out, the next block started just slightly before the signal, and the train's
wheels had just crossed into it. Of course, with perfect timing, the train
in that block (which had been holding to enter the yard) had just received
clearance ahead...and its engineer had just given his train the gun as mine
entered his block. With momentum, the result was an accelerating train
coming up behind a train just starting to move.
"Stop! Stop your block!" I yelled to the engineer sitting in the other cab,
across the layout. I remember getting a quizzical look in return. Like, 'why
is he telling me what to do with my train?'
My locomotive rear-ended his caboose on a curve, carrying it clean off the
tracks, along with about a half dozen freight cars, before stopping. Now the
delays into the yard were going to really increase.
Funny thing is, the friend who invited me to the club got it all on video.
He was filming that evening, and its funny to watch. The camera is panning
around the layout when you hear me yell, and the camera suddenly swings
around to a bunch of cars strewn around the curve. And that SD-40 is just
sitting there grinning...
It's also a wreck that could have been avoided by placing the block end well past
the signal instead of before it! (DC or DCC)
Isn't there some rule relating to not stopping trains in tunnels over there???