Details of Railway Accidents in the Ottawa Area

1910, August 28 - Head on collision between two freight trains, Smiths Falls, CPR., Belleville sub, one injury.

Merrickville Star-Chronicle 1 September 1910

Engineer  Lost an Arm  - Remainder ol Two Freight Crews Escape
Smith's Falls, Aug. 29  In a head-on collision, one mile from the C.P.R.. station yards here, Engineer Riley of Havelock was the only one of the two train crews who was injured, when freight trains No.1498 and No. 669 came together with a fearful crash early Sunday mornng.
Engine 669 had just got nicely out of the yard and was fairly under way and the other train was coming at a good speed down grade for the up grade into the yard, when the two collided. The engineers of both trains saw the inevitable coming and put on all the brakes, but it was too late, and the two ponderous engines came together with a terrible crash. Engineer "Matt" Riley, of Havelock, who was on the outgoing train, was hanging on to his engine with his left hand when the impact occurred and his arm was jammed between the engine and tender and cut off at the shoulder when he dropped to the- ground. The rest of the crews of both trains came off with bad strains and cuts but fortunately none of them were very seriously injured. Engine No. 669 left the yard at 6.27 and in a very short time after that was caught in the embrace of the other engine and the two were then in a twisted mass with the tender of No. 1498 thrown right up on the top at the engine. Several freight cars were smashed to pieces.
Soon after the collision fire broke out. The town fire alarm was sounded and in a very, short time the firemen had a (l)ine of hose laid from the nearest hydrant to the burning mass and kept the fire under control, which allowed the wrecking crews to clear the track and save a lot of property. There was a carload of horses behind the train coming in and it was leamed that they wonld be burned up but an engine was brought from Perth and pulled it away.
The crew of the train coming in were Stanley Barclay, engineer; Clifford White, fireman ; Geo. Acherman, conductor, and E. Kelsey and R. Taylor, brakemen, all of Havelock, with the exception of White who is from Smiths Falls. Those on the train going out were M. Riley, engineer Melville Catarine, fireman ; G. Young, conductor and Harry Buchanan brakeman. Riley, who got his arm taken off, walked to the station and was from there taken in the ambulance to St. Francis Hospital where he doing nicely.
The cause of the accident has not yet been found out, but it is asserted some orders must have been misunderstood.

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Updated 10 January 2022