Wednesday, July 25, 2018

How'd they jump the rails this much?

On 8th December 1901, a train accident at Top Points on the Zig Zag line in the Blue Mountains did not end in tragedy because the first yard at Top Points did not end in a solid wall as they were originallu intended to, only a sheer drop. In that year a train coming down the Zig Zag lost control of its brakes, crashed through the wooden bufferstop, and stopped half suspended over the cliff edge. The driver and fireman were uninjured - when they realised that the train could not stop, they had jumped out. The day after the accident the train was pulled back on the track, and allowed to continue on its way, remaining in service until the mid 1950s.


  1. Nowadays the TSA (Transportation Security Administration) would impound the SOB for two years while they determine the cause and then it would probably never see a set of tracks again. Yet this train rolled on for another forty nine years! Go figure

  2. Great Grandpa should have never put that penny on the rails! Actually its kind of like understeer in a car. There's a lot of mass when it comes to train movement, and if its going too fast to negotiate a turn or a zig zag the wheels might climb off the rail entirely, the force of the train might also cause the rail gauge to widens enough for a derailment, or you can have a rail-rollover which causes wheels to fall between rails. In the early days it wasn't uncommon for rails to break.