AN ALARMING ACCIDENT ON THE LONDON AND NORTH. - WESTFRN¡ .RAILWAY. .1|1866-06-02|The Brecon Reporter and South Wales General Advertiser - Welsh Newspapers Online
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AN ALARMING ACCIDENT ON THE LONDON AND NORTH. WESTFRN RAILWAY. .1 An accident of rather a serious character ocanrred on Monday on the Oxford and Banbury line. The following particulars are given by a passengerThe excursion train started from Northampton about eight a.m., being long and heavily laden, and proceeded in due order to Bletchley. Here two other excursion trains from Oxford and Banbury were attached to the Northampton train, forming one monster train, com- prising about 40 carriages, containing probably about <2 000 persons, and drawn by two powerful engines. The train proceeded in this order to Tring, where it was shunted on to the additional side line which terminates at the abutment of the bridge which stands about 200 yards before reaohing the Watford tunnel. It proceeded slowly through the Berkhampstead and King's Langley stations, and, owing to some extraordinary mismanagement, was allowed to, run against the abutment of the bridge before-alluded to, and which is about two miles from the King s Langley station. Fortunately, the speed at the time of concussion hal been reduced to the rate of from four to five miles per hour. Had the speed been greater, the loss of life would undoubtedly have been. very great. The drivers and stokers of the engines, having previously reversed the steam and applied the breaks, saved themselves by jumping off. The concussion was a very severe one, awing to the immense length and weight of the train. The two engines were reduced to a complete wreck, the tender of the first being literally forced over and through the boiler, and lying against the abutment of the bridge; the second engine lying on its side on the embankment smashed and forced over the wreck of the first. The guard's break-van, which was next the engine, was, except the break part, crushed up like a broken match- box. The two carriages next the guard's van were thrown off the rails in an oblique direction, the fore- most end of the second carriage (a second-class) being thrust into the one next the guard's, which was a first- class carriage. The guard escaped with a out on the side of the face but a man who was travelling with him was rendered insensible, and was eventually re- moved on a platelayer's. trolly to Watford. It is feared the shock in his case has produced concussion of the brain. The effeot on the excursionists can be hardly de- scribed. The occupants of opposite seats were thrown violently into contact with each other, and those who esoaped with bruisea only were extremely fortunate. Heads were thrown into stunning collision with other heads, the blood flowing profusely fr-om the foreheads, cheeks, evebrows, and mouths of many of the passen- gers. Within an incredibly short space of time the more fortunate passengers made their exit from the carriages, and afterwards assisted those most injured to alight. The embankment presented a truly pitiable epectaole âyoung women dressed in their holiday attire lying about wifrh the blood streaming over their clothing, men sitting with their heads bound up with pocket- handkerchiefs, children crying; in fact, the great majority more or less bruised, and at a moderate com- putation some 200 or upwards bleeding more or lees profusely. Many of the women fainted away, and brandy and other spirits were freely offered in these cases to the more unfortunate ones by those excur- sionista who happened to be in possession of the stimulant. The villagers of King's Langley also quickly flocked to the spot, and rendered willing and praiseworthy assistance, by fetching buckets and cans of water to wash the blood from the wounds of the most: badly injured. The passengers expressed great indignation at the management which had induced the accident.

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