Details of Railway Accidents in the Ottawa Area

1927 December 25 - Rear end collision, two passenger trains at Smiths Falls. Minor injuries

Ottawa Citizen 27 December 1927

Two Men Slightly Hurt When Second Section Runs Into Rear of First Section at Smiths Falls.
NAPANEE, Ont., Dec. 25. Two men received slight injuries and traffic was held up for four hours when the second section of the Canadian National Express, No. 8, Toronto to Ottawa, ran into the rear of the first section at Smith Falls at 4.46 a.m. today.
A. G. Beeman, Cleveland, an employee of the Bell Telephone company, sustained injuries to his left elbow and A. T. Bradfield, 222 1-2 George street, Toronto, had his left knee slightly hurt.
Both trains were running behind time when the accident occurred, but the exact cause has not been determined.
Several cars on both trains were damaged. The engine of the second section had the pilot torn off and the baggage car of the first section partially telescoped on the tender of the engine.
The injured passengers were in the third pullman car from the rear of the first section of the train.

Ottawa Journal 27 December 1927

Engine crashes into last car of C.N.R. Train
Second section hits first, which had stopped at Smiths Falls station.
A rear-end collision occurred at the Smiths Falls station on Sunday morning at 7:00, when Canadian National train number 8, due in the capital at 7.45 a. m., was struck by the second section of the train. A sleeping car on the rear of the first section was telescoped by the locomotive of the second section, while the baggage car on the second section was pushed over the tender of the train.
Word was received from Belleville early this morning. Superintendent McMillan, of the Belleville division has ordered an immediate investigation in order to find out who was responsible for the wreck.
Struck by chair.
While there was no one seriously hurt many people received painful injuries. Among these were three former Ottawa people in the second section, Mr. snd Mrs. Albert Beament, of Cleveland, Ohio, who were returning to spend the Christmas season with the former's relatives at 68 1st Avenue and A.T. Bradfield, 222 1-2 George Street, Toronto, who was en route to visit his mother, Mrs. Bradfield, 361 Bank Street.
Mr. Beament received a painful bruise to his left arm when he was struck by a chair in the washroom on one of the Pullman cars, while his wife received numerous bruises, Mr. Bradfield sustained painful injuries to one of his legs.
Porter unconscious.
The story of the affair told by P. McKeown, C.N.R. agent at Smiths Falls, there were about 50 to 60 Ottawa people on the train which was struck. He stated that the second section of the train was running close behind the first section, and on coming around a curve as it entered Smiths Falls, travelling at about 15 miles an hour, it crashed into the first section which had stopped about 5 minutes for orders. The second section had slowed down or the crash might have been more serious. There was some panic but the conductors quickly passed through the the coaches to make a check-up of any injured passengers.
The first section of the train carried seven sleeping coaches and most of the occupants were still in their berths when the crash ocurred. Those in the rear sleepers were badly shaken up, while one of the coloured porters was struck on the head by a flying cuspidor which was hurled into in the air by the jolt and rendered unconscious for a few minutes.
Owing to the accident happening outside the Ottawa Division superintendent W. R. Kelly stated to The Journal he had no definite information about the mishap. He had been assured no one was seriously hurt. Smiths Falls comes into the jurisdiction of superintendent McMillan of the Belleville division.
Running behind time.
Passengers on the second section were transferd to the first section, and after the end sleeper of the first section had been uncoupled the train proceeded to Ottawa arriving here 2 hours late.
Station Agent P McKeown of the C.N.R. at Smiths Falls, stated no blame could be attached to anyone for the accident, as far as he could tell, there being no misinterpretation of orders. The engineer of the second section was unable to see the first section until he rounded the curve near the station and it was then too late to avoid a smash. Both trains were running considerably behind time it was stated. The crews of both trains were composed of Toronto and Belleville men.
Is thrown violently.
"My wife and I left Toronto on the Montreal train," Albert Beament told The Journal, "at Napanee we transfered to the second section of the Toronto Ottawa train which was running considerably late. I was in the wash-room when the crash came and I was thrown violently to one side of the compartment. At the same time I was struck by a heavy chair which was in the washroom.
"My wife, who was in another part of the coach, received injuries to her arm and a sprained neck. Most of the passengers in our coach was thrown from their feet by the shock and the porter in the coach was knocked out for a moment or two."
Mr. Bradfield was feeling little the worse for his experience last night except that his injured leg caused him to limp quite perceptively. He is returning to Toronto tonight.
A statement received from Belleville early this morning was to the effect that there would be an immediate investigation into the matter. While both trains were running late and had time to make up, the second section which was a lighter train than the first may have been travelling too fast to give the first section time to get away from Smiths Falls.

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