Details of Railway Accidents in the Ottawa Area

1931, July 2 - CPR Brakeman dies after a collision at Kemptville, Winchester sub.

Ottawa Journal 3 July 1931

Smiths Falls Man is Badly Injured in Railway Mishap
Leg amputation necessary to free victim caught in the tender of train.

Kemptville, Ont., July 3 - amputation of the left leg was necessary to release William Arnold, of Smiths Falls, when he got caught between the tender and engine cab of C.P.R. engine no. 884, running between Montreal and Smiths Falls last night. The limb was severed by two surgeons between the knee and ankle.
The engineer, at a point three miles east of Bedell, known as Hayes Pit, noticed that the water supply in his tank was insufficient to take him to Bedell. He accordingly cut the train in two and ran light to Bedell where he filled his tank.

On downgrade.

As the train he had left was on a downgrade and apparently insecurely braked, it followed him a mile and a quarter before coming to a stop. In shunting back, it is stated he asked the fireman if he could see the train.
He replied in the negative, the train being obscured from view by some sharp curves. Taking another look the fireman saw the runaway train within 250 ft. The engineer was unable to bring the engine to a standstill when notified and as a result hit an empty coal car which mounted the tank of the engine, the tender crashing into the cab.

Left foot caught.

Arnold, standing between the tender and the cab had his left foot caught in the tender. Every effort was made to extricate him but finally on the arrival of Dr. G.D. Gordon and Dr. R A. Ruby, an amputation was considered necessary to release the imprisoned man.
He was rushed to Smiths Falls General Hospital in a special light engine and van, where he was placed on the operating table. His condition was critical at an early hour this morning.

Ottawa Citizen 4 July 1931

Smiths Falls Mourns Brakeman's Death
Genuinely Regret Tragic Death of W. E. Arnold.
SMITHS FALLS, Ont., July 3.- Shortly after midnight the death occurred in the public hospital here of William Edward Arnold of Smiths Falls, well known C.P.R. brakeman, who suffered such severe injuries in a train collision at Kemptville, near Bedell, at about half-past ten o clock last night. Having been rushed to the Smiths Falls hospital after being released from a tender and locomotive where he was severely crushed in the collision, deceased succumbed to his injuries everything possible had been done to have [sic] his life. From the first, however, his condition was of a serious nature from the injuries received.

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Updated 25 January 2021