Rednal rail crash

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Rednal rail crash
Date 7 June 1865
Location Rednal station, Shropshire
Country England
Rail line Shrewsbury to Chester Line
Cause Derailment due to excessive speed
Trains 1
Deaths 13
Injuries 30
List of UK rail accidents by year

Rednal rail crash was a rail accident that occurred near Rednal station in Shropshire.

On 7 June 1865 a permanent way (groundwork and rails) gang were lifting and packing the "up" line 600 yards north of Rednal station on a 1 in 132 gradient that falls from Whittington. A green flag had been set 1100 yards away at the top of the incline as a warning. At 12:29 an excursion train from Birkenhead left Chester for Shrewsbury consisting of 28 coaches and two brake vans and hauled by two locomotives. An additional four coaches were added at Gobowen.

When the train reached Whittington it began to gain speed on the gradient, but the driver of the front locomotive did not see the flag warning of the work ahead. The brakes were applied when the workmen were sighted, but it was too late to stop such a heavy train. The lead locomotive derailed on the unsupported track, but continued along the ballast until it reached points outside Rednal station where it ran off the road and turned over. The extreme weight of the following train meant that the first four carriages were destroyed completely, killing 11 passengers and 2 train crew.

The enquiry, while criticizing the lack of braking power on such a massive train, blamed mainly the inadequate protection of the permanent way work, which should be supplemented by detonators.


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