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Author Topic: "dozens injured" in German train crash, 05/12/2017.  (Read 2544 times)
broadgage
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« on: December 05, 2017, 08:45:05 pm »

Early reports suggest a collision between a passenger train and a freight train.
Up to 50 persons injured, no word on fatalities, hopefully there are no lives lost.

Near Dusseldorf.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-42246087
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU (Diesel Multiple Unit) is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
broadgage
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« Reply #1 on: December 05, 2017, 08:52:57 pm »

Slightly later reports put the number of injured at only five, compared to earlier reports of "dozens" or "about 50"

Pictures on social media appeared to show a number of "walking wounded" receiving first aid treatment for cuts.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU (Diesel Multiple Unit) is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
4064ReadingAbbey
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« Reply #2 on: December 08, 2017, 08:35:25 pm »

A report from the German news magazine Der Spiegel can be found http://www.spiegel.de/panorama/zugunglueck-in-meerbusch-a-1181943.html, in German. (I'm in Germany at the moment...!)

Google Translate ist your friend...!
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stuving
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« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2017, 10:07:49 pm »

Or, for something easier (still dated Wednesday), Deutsche Welle:
Quote
Germany opens inquiry after train collision injures dozens

Authorities have said it is too early to speculate what caused the collision between a freight train and a passenger train near Düsseldorf. The driver of the train was praised, however, for preventing a worse crash.
(picture-alliance/dpa/A. Stoffel)

German authorities were investigating the cause of a train accident on Wednesday after dozens of people were injured in a collision near the city of Düsseldorf.

Marcel Winter, a spokesman for the British-owned National Express railway, said it remained unclear why the passenger train traveling from Cologne to Krefeld struck a Deutsche Bahn cargo train on its way to Rotterdam on Tuesday night.

Clean up crews were still on the scene on Wednesday afternoon, and Winter added that the line would remain closed until the debris was cleared away and the electrical overhead wires repaired. Repair work to the tracks is expected to take at least a few days.

The driver was praised for swiftly applying the emergency brake and slowing the passenger train

It emerged on Wednesday that the driver of the passenger train had slammed on the emergency brake as soon as he saw an obstacle on the tracks, avoiding a much more serious collision.

"We were very lucky," said Winter. "It could have been much worse."

Initial reports indicated that 50 people had been injured in the incident, but that number was later revised. Police said that nine of the 41 passengers wounded were seriously hurt, while the other 105 on the train were able to walk away unscathed.

Later on Wednesday, an expert from Germany's Federal Railway Accident Investigation Board (BEU) said that "the passenger train should not have been allowed to drive on this particular track."

BEU spokesman Gerd Münnich said that the cargo train was standing still and waiting for a signal to enter the station at Meerbusch when the collision occurred. Subsequent trains are not allowed to drive on to the same tracks when the train in front of them is stationary.

Passengers remained calm, says witness

The crash occurred around 7:30 pm local time (1830 UTC) in the small town of Meerbusch, in Germany's most populous state of North-Rhine Westphalia (NRW» (Network Rail Western - about)). The front car of the train was heavily damaged, but the rest of the train was largely unaffected.

The fire department was able to rescue the last of the passengers at around 9:15 pm, after initially being unable to reach the site due to damaged high-voltage wires.

Passenger Lukas Kehler, 19, told public broadcaster WDR that the crash had been loud and frightening, but that all on board had remained calm.

"There was no sense of panic," he said.

Images showed that there was moderate damage to the passenger train's front carriage, while the others appeared largely unaffected. Some of the cargo train carriages were thrown off the rails, however, as a result of the collision.

Most train services in Germany are run by the partly-state owned Deutsche Bahn, but National Express has been operating some routes in NRW since 2015.

I'm puzzled quite how those goods wagons got pushed off the track into that position.
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grahame
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« Reply #4 on: December 08, 2017, 10:15:24 pm »


I'm puzzled quite how those goods wagons got pushed off the track into that position.


It does look odd.   I would suggest the passenger train rear-ended the freight it happened that the rear vehicle was lifted by the nose and fell right, dragging the next one until couplings broke and 2nd got pushed too.  And I suspect the rest of the freight had been moved forward before the picture was taken, the yellow thing being some sort of engineering or emergency vehicle also brought in later.
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stuving
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« Reply #5 on: December 08, 2017, 10:51:14 pm »


I'm puzzled quite how those goods wagons got pushed off the track into that position.


It does look odd.   I would suggest the passenger train rear-ended the freight it happened that the rear vehicle was lifted by the nose and fell right, dragging the next one until couplings broke and 2nd got pushed too.  And I suspect the rest of the freight had been moved forward before the picture was taken, the yellow thing being some sort of engineering or emergency vehicle also brought in later.

It must be along those lines. In fact, as those wagons are empty, the two end ones may have steepled upwards and fallen sideways together, while the train ran underneath to the next. The picture of the leading carriage (not copied) does show that it's taken a big downward push on its nose, enough to bend it in the middle.
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eightf48544
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« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2017, 03:28:58 pm »

The bend/crack in the driving coach looks even more severe in the BBC» (British Broadcasting Corporation - home page) photo. Twitter/@FWMeerbusch
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« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2017, 04:30:23 pm »


I'm puzzled quite how those goods wagons got pushed off the track into that position.


I think the passenger train was still traveling at quite a high speed when it hit the freight looking at the damage to the leading coach.   The fact the freight was empty and the waggons deflected they way they did absorbed a lot of the energy, I feel if they had been loaded there would have been loss of life and far greater number of injured.

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broadgage
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« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2017, 04:40:16 pm »

Regarding the derailed goods wagons, is it possible that these vehicles were ALREADY off the track due to some unrelated mishap, such as a defect in the track or the goods wagons.
The division of the goods train would apply the brakes and promptly stop the train.

The signalling system should of course protect the partially derailed and stopped goods train, it would appear that this did not work.

I doubt that a relatively lightweight passenger train could fling the goods wagons some distance into the field where they are situated.
I consider it POSSIBLE that the passenger train struck the goods wagon that was already derailed but more or less upright and in line, and that the two vehicles in the field may not have been involved.

EDIT TO ADD (Automatic Dropping Device) This now looks unlikely, see following post for details.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2017, 04:13:17 pm by broadgage » Logged

A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU (Diesel Multiple Unit) is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
stuving
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« Reply #9 on: December 09, 2017, 06:06:37 pm »

Having looked a a few more reports, some more recent, the story is as follows (though much of this is really hearsay picked up by journalists, rather than official):

  • The goods train had stopped at a signal, but had just started again when struck
  • The passenger train had also stopped, but been told to move off again. Some reports have this as a verbal permission, not signalled.
  • The last two goods wagons were thrown off the track. The tops of the bodies of some a pretty bent, so they must have been pushed well out of line.
  • Here's a video of the damage, showing more detail - pause it when those words aren't in the way!
  • Wagons don't have buffers any more, the end force will be borne by the coupling alone. These seem to have collapsed, not surprisingly (and perhaps intentionally). The ends of the chassis frames ought perhaps to hold them true, but it only needs one wagon to rise or slew a bit for that to collapse too, asymmetrically.
  • There was a near miss not far away (at Gruiten bei Solingen) in similar circumstances in February - attributed to a signaller's error. That time an ICE just stopped before hitting another train.
« Last Edit: December 23, 2017, 12:48:59 pm by stuving » Logged
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