Tag Archives | fatality

A flyaway telegraph message

There are many cases in our database in which we see similar circumstances – and often similar outcomes: track workers hit by trains, shunters crushed between wagons, slips, trips and falls, porters injured whilst moving goods, and so on. There are, of course, a great many cases which are truly unique – one of which […]

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Histories of medical humanities and attitudes: Examining class and shock via the accident reports

The accidents and reports from which our database draws reveal much about all sorts of aspects of British and Irish society around the time of the First World War. Plenty of this relates directly to the lives – and sometimes deaths – of railway workers. But underlying this we might find other aspects that speak […]

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A question of trust

How far could workers control their own fates? In the 19th century and well into the 20th it was believed by many – certainly the railway companies’ managers – that workers were ultimately responsible for the vast majority of the accidents that befell them, as they made choices and acted ‘carelessly.’ What was rarely taken […]

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Multiple Scottish casualties – the Flying Scotsman & Sandilands Viaduct cases, April 1914

April 1914 saw 2 railway accidents which raise interesting issues about the differences between worker and passenger incidents – particularly as both involved multiple casualties. On 14 April 1914, the Flying Scotsman train (not to be confused with the loco!) collided with a goods train at Burntisland in Fife, killing 2 (the driver and fireman […]

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4 men atop a runaway train

At best, we might think of runaway trains as belonging to the world of high drama, the culmination of an outlandish film plot; at worst, we might consider the real life cases which, though rare, had disastrous or well-known consequences. In the UK this would include the case of John Axon in 1957; beyond it […]

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It’s cold outside …

If you’re in the UK, you’ll have noticed it’s been rather cold of late, including a lot of snow. Despite the adverse comment about some train operators pre-emptively cancelling services, an awful lot of work has gone in to keeping the system moving – though as usual, most of that is behind the scenes, in […]

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