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Nostalgia & History > Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions


Date: 05/06/07 14:48
Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions
Author: topper

Someone sent me the following link to this Webshots photo album. It contains photos of the bomb train explosion at SP's Antelope Yard in Roseville on April 28, 1973. Many of you might've already seen it, but if not...


http://community.webshots.com/album/184302210PjkyTz?935

For ex-SP Sacremento, Western and San Joaquin employees, how 'bout posting where you were working when this happened? I was on the Benicia Switcher that morning. As the radio chatter about the explosion spread, and the Ozol Yardmaster mentioned something about it, we were up the hill turning the coke, so I said, "Wow! We can see it from here!" Couldn't really, of course.



Date: 05/06/07 20:26
Re: Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions
Author: RoustaboutAl

These are from my collection. They were shot by an SP Roseville switchman and hogger from their plane. As to the question, I was on vacation kicking back and fishing from my boat and watched it all on TV as it was happening. Back then I was with the WP working the locals out of Milpitas.

Enjoy....



Date: 05/07/07 10:27
Re: Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions
Author: JLY

Antelope Yard from 8:30am on.



Date: 05/07/07 11:07
Re: Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions
Author: Valleyhog

I cannot recall what was determined to be the cause of the explosion. Anyone know? Seems that these bombs were destined for or came from the US Navy facility at Port Chicago.



Date: 05/07/07 11:09
Accident Report
Author: Railbaron

For those wishing more information, here is the official FRA accident report. Note that under the synopsis, "The cause of the explosions was not determined."

http://dotlibrary1.specialcollection.net/scripts/ws.dll?websearch&site=dot_railroads

Oops, the link didn't go directly to the report. OK, click on "1973" under the list of years, then on the first "Southern Pacific Transportation Co." link for the report.

BTW, the second report down on this series was a similar occurrence at Benson, Arizona, just 1 month later.



Date: 05/07/07 11:34
Re: Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions
Author: TAW

topper Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> For ex-SP Sacremento, Western and San Joaquin
> employees, how 'bout posting where you were
> working when this happened?

I was Roseville-Tracy-Fresno asst. chief in Bakersfield. The phone rang shortly after we heard about what was going on in Roseville. I answered and was talking to my counterpart in Roseville calling to line up 375 and a couple of other trains to run via the West Valley and work out with me what to do with trains that had nowhere to go. The explosions were still going on and were, let's say plainly audible over our conversation (say again, I didn't hear that). I told him that we heard that everyone had been evacuated from Roseville and Antelope and was surprised that he was calling. He said that the dispatchers were told that they were needed right where they were and too valuable to be evacuated.

(About ten years later I had my own experience of too valuable to be evacuated when King Street Station in Seattle was evacuated because of a suspected bomb.....well, uh, everybody was evacuated except the train dispatchers.)

TAW



Date: 05/07/07 12:20
Re: Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions
Author: Railbaron

topper Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> For ex-SP Sacremento, Western and San Joaquin
> employees, how 'bout posting where you were
> working when this happened?

I was in San Luis Obispo going to work on #11 that day when the operator there told us about it. I drove up to Roseville a few weeks afterward and was amazed at all the carnage (wrecked cars) piled up between the Rock Pile and the Receiving Yard (where the explosions took place).



Date: 05/07/07 13:21
Re: Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions
Author: topper

Railbaron Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> topper Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > For ex-SP Sacremento, Western and San Joaquin
> > employees, how 'bout posting where you were
> > working when this happened?
>
> I was in San Luis Obispo going to work on #11 that
> day when the operator there told us about it. I
> drove up to Roseville a few weeks afterward and
> was amazed at all the carnage (wrecked cars) piled
> up between the Rock Pile and the Receiving Yard
> (where the explosions took place).

The Friday after the explosion I was called for a ballast train that had originated at Logan.

Arriving at Antelope, we were told to come up 21 to the Roseville yard. Looking to the left at what had been the Antelope receiving yard was pretty eerie. Just a big crater where the bomb and LPG cars had been.



Date: 05/07/07 16:46
Re: Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions
Author: ButteStBrakeman

At the time of the explosion(s) I was working the Valla Switcher out of Los Nietos. Have often heard the Heroics (I guess that's what it was called) of an ass't Trainmaster by the name of Gorman. Topper, can you enlighten us ??

V

SLOCONDR



Date: 05/07/07 16:48
Re: Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions
Author: WAF

I heard it over the Bay Area PBX. R.L.King was talking with OP&C and giving out a list of Chiefs (in terms of SP management) to call and send to Roseville



Date: 05/07/07 19:46
Re: Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions
Author: topper

SLOCONDR Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

> Have often heard
> the Heroics (I guess that's what it was called) of
> an ass't Trainmaster by the name of Gorman.
> Topper, can you enlighten us ??

Beats me.

Here's the email that was sent with the link. It's from a retired conductor/Local Chairman. I've X'ed out some of the names to protect the innocent.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"All those who were working on the Western Division that fateful day will remember where we were and what we were doing. I myself was a assigned to a Cal-P Crew as a Brakeman which was called to go to RV prior to the explosion(s). However, being the senior Brakeman on the crew, was used off as a Emergency Conductor (a little bit of black market work) on 1-410 Oakland to Tracy. Where we found out on tie up in Tracy about the explosion. My own crew, Conductor XXXXX XXXXX and XXXXX XXXXXXX, were in route to Roseville when the explosion occurred and told to put their train away on the East Bound Siding at Davis. One particular West Bound Cal-P Crew, Conductor X X XXXXXX, Brakemen Gary Gorman and XX XXXXXX, were on their train waiting for a Highball on the Running Track at Antelope, when the bombs went off. Head Brakeman XXXXXX was so shook up, mentally and physically, that he took off running. He ran all the way back to his room at the LeRoy Hilton, jumped into bed and covered up his head. As a part of their settlement with the SP for there injuries, XXXXXX and XXXXXX took some of money, while Gorman took a job as Assistant Trainmaster Watsonville. While the name of their Engineer escapes me, I still remember his jovial face, a real fun guy to work with. My thanks to XXXX XXXX for bring back old memories."



Date: 05/02/14 07:27
Re: Webshots link to pics of Roseville bomb explosions
Author: spdonner

Hello all;

I'm looking for some more detailed information and first hand information from those that were involved with the Roseville explosion the day it happened. I have a lot of media information and some government information about the incident and was looking to get statements from people that might know or could give more on this day of April 27th, 1973. I grew up in Auburn, California and my father worked as a hostler in Roseville yard in the late 70's and said he had talked with the fire chief of the SP fire crew, told me the story and it has always interested me. Since the patriot act of 2001 went into effect I can't hardly get any information anymore on this derailment as much as I was prior. Thank you in advance;

Brittany
Renton, WA



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