|Ottawa Citizen 26 January 1959|
No Injuries As Train Derailed
Nineteen cars of a 38-car CPR way freight were derailed at 8.30 a.m. today, seven miles west of Aylmer. The train was enroute from Ottawa West to Shawville.
None of the five-man crew was injured when one tank car, loaded with oil, and 18 empty cars left the rails.
CPR authorities are investigating the possibility the wreck was caused by a broken rail, possibly due to 20 below zero temperatures in the area last night.
"Not too much damage was caused." CPR officials said.
Auxiliary crews were promptly despatched to the scene of the accident from both Ottawa West and from Smiths Falls.
It was estimated that the line would be cleared in from two to three hours' time, though it may take all day to get all the derailed cars back on the track.
Taxis to Ottawa were arranged for passengers from the regular passenger train which leaves Waltham at 6.50 a.m. and is due in Ottawa at 10.25 a.m.
Both passenger and freight trains on the Ottawa-Waltham line customarily travel at a maximum speed of 35 miles per hour.
W. A. Scharfe was conductor and Edward Glenn was engineer of the freight train. Both are from Ottawa.
The freight left Ottawa West at 7.20 a.m. The accident occurred 13.4 miles west of Ottawa West, and about seven miles west of Aylmer.
Bruce Chapman writes (March 2019)
This derailment was on a Monday morning.
The previous Saturday, #643 had gone was with the S3 6552 with engineer Kip Casselman and Charlie Smith, who eventually went to Revelstoke when all the job cuts came with the loss of the pool trains and ‘The Dominion’ in 1966.
Hilton Mines was still ramping up in 1959, and #51 thus had only one unit, RS-18 8733 with Earl Glenn engineer and Ben Lacasse as fireman, ordered for 0635, and left about 0730.
Grabbing employee’s timetable #50 of October 26th, 1958, #642 with 6552 would have been at Breckenridge at 0928. The last operator west of Ottawa was at Quyon, and #642 was due there at 0855, so I expect when the derailment occurred, Scharfe would have thrown up the van telephone to the wires and got ahold of the train dispatcher in Smiths Falls.
Whether the taxis went to Quyon or Breckenridge, I would expect Breckenridge, as the highway #8, later #148, is right beside the track at this point.
The first work train with the small auxiliary from Ottawa West was ordered for 0850, SAP, about the time that #642 was due at Quyon, and he had the GP9 8707 for power with engineer Curly Buttler and fireman Ken McElroy.
Then at 1230 there is shown the Smiths Falls auxiliary with the GP9 8701 ordered out at 1230 with engineer Eugene Piche and fireman Harvey Sparks.
The the big stupidity, the road repair car from Smiths Falls came in with the G1 4-6-2 2207, and he was ordered to the derailment at 1345 with engineer George (Gracie) Allen and fireman Joe Baker.
What this train would do up that pike with the 2 GP9’s amazes me...somebody sure got brave with this move!!
The afternoon passenger train apparently ran back west from Breckenridge with the 6552 backwards to Waltham, and regular engineer R. Couture and Aime Brunet would have taxied to Breckenridge along with any passengers from Ottawa Union.
Anyway, the 8733 got back first somehow and was used on the night freight to Smiths Falls, #89 ordered at 0215 the next morning.
When the 3 trains got back in, and the line was clear, another guy was sent to Hilton Mines with what was left of #51’s original train, power RS-18 8779 with engineer Kip Casselman who had come in by taxi off #642 that morning and Charlie Smith from the same train.
#51 on Tuesday, January 27th was set back until 1015 with the GP9 8708, engineer Earl Glenn from yesterday’s derailment and fireman Don Cochrane.
#643, the Waltham mixed this day had the D4g 417 with Couture and Brunet.
G1 4-6-2 2207 came in for coal and water and is shown going back up the Waltham as an extra ‘Eardley’ at 1845 Tuesday evening with engineer Arnold Pearson and fireman Aurele Couvrette.
Wednesday January 28th, they all kept working up there, must have been a real traffic jam.
#643 had the diesel 6552 with Couture and Brunet.
Thursday January 29th, the 2207 is shown going back to Smiths Falls with the auxiliary and the road repair car at 0145 with Casselman and Cochrane; GP9 8701 is back with the Smiths Falls road repair car which went back with the steam locomotive 2207, and is in yard service at Ottawa West at 0800, and 8707 has now returned with the small Ottawa West auxiliary and he went into yard service at Ottawa West at 1600.
Again, #51 was set back to 1015 with the RS-18 8746 and Earl Glen and Joe Baker.
And #643 had the 6552 with the regular crew.