BNSF Railway Train Derailment and Subsequent Train Collision

  • 🎬 Video
  • ℹ️ Published 5 years ago

To read the full report follow the link below:

Casselton, North Dakota
December 30, 2013

The video comes from the forward-facing on-board image recorders from the two trains involved in the accident. Video from the Grain Train lead locomotive 6990 was downloaded from the undamaged GE Lococam on-board image recorder. Parametric data from the Grain Train lead locomotive 6990 was downloaded from the undamaged event recorder. Video from the Crude Oil Train lead locomotive 4934 was obtained from data transmitted wirelessly when the emergency brakes were applied, and parametric data was downloaded from the trailing distributed power unit locomotive 6684.

The video begins at 14:08:37 Central Standard Time (CST) with the view from the front of the Grain Train as it travels westbound on main track 1. The text “Grain Train #6990” and the speed of the train are displayed at the bottom center of the screen. The westbound direction of travel is briefly indicated by a text annotation. The train passes a track switch and a vehicle belonging to a signal maintainer at 14:09:06; the vehicle is labeled by a text annotation for about 10 seconds as the train approaches the vehicle. The front end of the crude oil train begins to be visible on the adjacent track to the left at about 14:09:41, and it is labeled with a text annotation. The derailment of the Grain Train occurs at 14:09:57, after which time a digital counter is shown on the right in the image, indicating the time in seconds since the derailment. A text annotation indicates that the emergency brakes on the Grain Train were applied at 14:10:13, uncommanded by the train crew. At 14:10:33, the lead locomotive of the Crude Oil Train passes the lead locomotive of the Grain Train.

At 14:11:02, the video switches to the view from the front of the Crude Oil Train as it travels eastbound on main track 2. The text “Crude Oil Train #4934” and the speed of the train are displayed at the bottom center of the screen. The eastbound direction of travel is briefly indicated by a text annotation. A text annotation indicates an engineer-induced emergency brake application on the Crude Oil Train occurred at 14:11:03. A
text annotation also points out the 45th car in the Grain Train, which is fouling main track 2. The Crude Oil Train strikes the 45th car in the Grain Train at 14:11:12, leading to derailment of the Crude Oil Train, which departs main track 2 to the right and apparently comes to rest once impacting the built-up ballast supporting a parallel set of railroad tracks.

The video includes an audio overlay of radio traffic broadcast over radio channel 70, with communications from the Grain Train, the Crude Oil Train, the dispatcher and the signal maintainer passed by the Grain Train at 14:09:06. The audio begins with a call from the signal maintainer to the crew of the Grain Train at 14:10:31, and ends at 14:11:59 after the crew of the Crude Oil Train have reported the derailment and subsequent fire to the dispatcher.

💬 Comments

The crew is alive and well, I started working out of Dilworth one year after this happened and I assure you they made it out alive

Author — Alek M Lacina


absolutely fascinating/ gives one a look into the lesser known aspects/ the dangers of being an engineer/ certainly does nothing but increases my respect for the people that run these powerful machines/

Author — david asleep


This is exactly why I don't pull up right next to the crossing gates of a railroad. If it derails and the cars swing out you're dead.

Author — Tyrandus Silvershield


All kidding aside from the posted comments, we thank our railroad men and women for getting the products we need to market. Sure glad no one was seriously injured in this mishap!

Author — truckerman


Wow! I mean all I can say is just wow! That must have been absolutely terrifying to roll up and slam that car at over 40 mph. And holding on for dear life as your slamming through the snow. Glad everyone was safe and definitely makes me appreciate the railway workers even more.

Author — Jason Crawford


NTSB report says derailment caused by broken axle. Trains initially were on on different radio channels, was cause of delayed communications says NTSB report. (trains often are on different radio channels when traversing or going from one dispatchers controlled division to another dispatcher controlled area).

Author — Steve Smith


As soon as 6990 experienced an undesired emergency application they should have announced it on the radio, knowing that they were on double track and meeting eastbound 4934. I understand that it can catch you off guard, but any emergency brake application while moving can mean that some part of your train has derailed and that was tangent rail, they had a clear view of 4934 coming, and likely was aware of the upcoming meet due to hearing them calling signals and track detectors etc. I didn't hear an acknowledgement and warning of being in emergency until the signal maintainer asked them if they had problems and at that point they were nearly stopped; 4934 would have had more time to react if they had known sooner that 6990 was in emergency, not guaranteed that they would have been able to come to a safe complete stop or that they would have considered that 6990 was derailed and fouling their track, but they would have had more info and time to use judgement.

Author — Afro Slim


they should have pulled off that epic drift like the polar express once did

Author — TheSpiikki


"Which train is on fire, 6990?"

Doesn't matter, just have the firemen look for the plume of smoke and fire and you'll find the right train, can't miss it!

Author — Hobby Organist


Did anyone else notice he didn't signal before pulling off to the side of the track?

Author — Boro Nut


yet another incident demonstrating why we need more speed bumps on railroad tracks to keep our fathers and brothers SAFE!

Author — honban


Glad to hear you all made it out ok !
I understand what happened
I have worked in the rail industry for over 30 yrs
I heard all of your transmissions
Excellent radio/ train / looking out for our fellow brother
All the best to you

Author — richard skopyk


From the NTSB Final Report: *_Exclusions:_* _The track structure, the signal system, and train crewmembers’ compliance with operations rules and procedures did not contribute to the cause of the accident. Investigators conducted mechanical inspections of the equipment that did not derail and found no evidence of other causes that contributed to the derailment of either train. The pretrip mechanical inspections of both trains identified no defects._

Author — Lost_In_Blank


I am supriced the train stayed on its wheels in the snow, I am impressed!

Author — Chris F


Glad those guys made it. I have a lot of respect for the people that move our nations goods and people by rail. Lots of weight moving around on those things. I imagine those poor dudes needed some new britches after that ordeal.

Author — Keith Thomas


The fact that this was probably ended on a single core gives me a lot of respect for the people who make these

Author — CHARLES.


Many years ago I was on a train that derailed due to a landslide. Thankfully, we were going super slowly and everyone made it out ok. No collision or anything. Forgot about that.

Author — leloodallasmultipass


Oh come on. That oil train had more than enough room to swerve! If you ask me I think he was just looking for that insurance money

Author — Nathan Brown


The most amazing thing about this video is that the signal maintainer is

Author — Beau Hatman


they saved alot of money building the westbound tracks as close as possible to the eastbound tracks. no one could have anticipated such a disaster.

Author — BIKE MAN