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Eastern Railroad Discussion > Runaway - Doylestown, Pa

Date: 10/22/05 15:16
Runaway - Doylestown, Pa
Author: FullService

Does anyone have any info on the runaway SEPTA commuter train from 01:00 hours Sunday morning from Doylestown, Pa on the R-5 Line? The last I heard, they were still speculating the train lost its air due to catanary power shutdown causing the brakes to bleed off.

Date: 10/22/05 15:45
Re: Runaway - Doylestown, Pa
Author: Jaap

No the cause was the crew did not secure the train with handbrakes as required by rule.
The turning off of the catenary or any technical reason would only be secondairy cause.

here is article:

None aboard moving train

The Intelligencer

An unmanned Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority train rolled out of the Doylestown Train Station in the middle of the night and made it to New Britain without incident earlier this week.

The runaway train caused no injuries or damage during its early-morning three-mile jaunt, officials said, but the unscheduled trip still is being investigated.

"Because nothing happened ... it is kind of amusing," said Bucks County Commissioner Charley Martin, who sits on SEPTA's board of directors. "But on the other hand, it could have had serious implications, and you want to make sure it doesn't happen again."

Richard Maloney, a spokesman for the public transit agency, said the train was being stored at the Doylestown station between the end of service Monday and the first ride Tuesday when it started moving.

About 1:30 a.m., he said, power was turned off along the line for maintenance work elsewhere. That deactivated the train's airbrakes, he said, and none of the handbrakes along each of the four train cars had been set.

Gravity did the rest.

"As you know, Doylestown sits at the top of a hill," Maloney said. "It simply started to cruise down the line."

The train glided through the station at Delaware Valley College and stopped just before the New Britain station when power to the line was restored.

Procedures call for handbrakes to be set on the cars when they're not being used, Maloney said.

Officials suspect the brakes weren't used because of "human error," he said, but an investigation is ongoing.

While power on the train itself was off, signals along the tracks and safety bars at intersections were working, he said, so any vehicles on the road at the time would have been blocked from driving in front of the errant train.

Maloney said no one was at the Doylestown station when the train started moving, but operators at SEPTA's control center in Philadelphia realized what had happened. They sent supervisors up to return the train to Doylestown once it stopped.

Maloney said he didn't know how fast the train was moving or exactly when it came to a halt.

Both Maloney and Martin said they don't recall anything like this happening before.

Phil Ehlinger, Doylestown's assistant manager, said the only other local rogue train incident he'd heard of happened in the early 1950s, when a boxcar somehow rolled into and through the back wall of an industrial building.

He said he'd still had no official word from SEPTA about this week's runaway train.

"Obviously, it's a little disconcerting that unmanned trains are rolling out of Doylestown Station," he said, "but we are confident that SEPTA can investigate the problem and prevent it in the future."

Brian Callaway can be reached at (215) 345-3060 or bcallaway@phillyBurbs.com.

Date: 10/29/05 03:51
Re: Runaway - Doylestown, Pa
Author: gpjr

they will be selling pencils on main st now.there done

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