CANADIAN TRAIN DISASTER.
PLUNGE INTO FROZEN RIVER. On the 21st January a terrible railway disaster occurred in Canada to the express between Montreal and Minneapolis, in which between fifty and sixty people lost their lives and cloße on one hundred were injured. It was not possible to get at the full extent of the disaster or the exact figures of tho dead and injured for several days, because a blizzard sprang up, which rendered the recovery of the bodies almost impossible. A New York correspondent states that the train, which contained about two hundred passengers, was composed of seven cars, including a Pullman sleeper, a first-class dining car, a colonist car, and a second-class car. When about forty miles west of Sudbury, in Western Ontario, where the Soult Ste. Marie Branch joins the Canadian Pacific main lino, the colonist car and the dining car jumped the track and crashed through a bridge over the Spanish River, falling on to the ice-bound stream and sinking in the freezing waters. The Pullman car was rolled down the embankment, at the edge of the bridge, while the rest of the train was derailed, but remained practically intact. The occupants in the colonist car were in the most pitiable condition, and it 'was here that the loss of life was the greatest. The occupants struggled frantically to escape, but the few who managed to pull themselves through the windows of the submerged car found themselves in the freezing water, which paralysed their energies, and some of them were drowned. The dining car had fallen in such a position that some of it was standing out of the water, though the latter reached nearly to the ceiling. Here the chief waiter, a man named Reynolds, with g^reat presence of mind, shouted to the diners, of whom the car was full, to keep their heads above water and to cling to the ventilators. WAITER SAVES LIVES. He then dived down and made his way out through one of the broken windows, and, pulling himself to the roof of the car, managed to rescue three paseengers by assisting them through the ventilators. With their help he then broke a hole in the roof, and altogether eight .were taken out of the diner. Before others could be rescued, however, the car, which had taken firo almost immediately after the accident, flamed so fiercely that the survivors clinging to the hat racks inside were either incinerated or, letting go their hold, sank back into the car and were drowned. Tho brave Reynolds stayed on the roof as long as possible until he was driven away by the flames. It is undoubtedly due to him that any lives were saved out of the dining car. The Pullman on the shore also took fire, and as it was impossible to extinguish the flames it is feared that two or three passengers who were unable to be extricated from the wreck were burned to death The survivors and trainmen worked with passionate eagerness, but they were few in numbers and appliances were wanting. The sufferings of the injured were terrible in the extreme, because, in addition to their hurts, the temperature was below zero, and their clothing, like that of their rescuers, was frozen stiff on their bodies. It was hours before any medical or surgical relief could be brought to them. When assistance arrived from Sudbury and Sanlt Ste. Marie and other neighbouring places those that could be moved were taken to the hospitals and the hotels of the nearest places. The work of recovering the bodies was continued for two days, Dut under extreme difficulties. A wind, amounting almost to a blizzard, prevailed all yesterday, and the temperature fell to 20deg. below zero. During a lull in operations the river was entirely frozen over again, absoluteiy obliterating all evidence of the sunken cars and their freight of dead bodie^. It was necessary to cut through the ice to continue operations, and the divers almosi Buccumbed from the intense cold. The cauae of the disaster is not yet known, though the railway officials declare that it was not due to a loose or broken rail. One of the unidentified dead is a priest.
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CANADIAN TRAIN DISASTER., Evening Post, Volume LXXIX, Issue 66, 19 March 1910
CANADIAN TRAIN DISASTER. Evening Post, Volume LXXIX, Issue 66, 19 March 1910
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