1985 L Class Derailment at Drouin

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vlinecars V/Man - "Yeah!"

Location: Here, there, everywhere!

Hi All,

Just wondering, does anyone have information and or photos on the derailment of an L class (L1163 I believe) at Drouin in 1985??????

Would be interested in seeing anything about it.

Kind Regards,

Matt Julian

 
Comengs Chief Commissioner

Location: Mourningtown Ride

Matt, some photos from 'Rodsrailpage';
http://rodsrailpage.fotopic.net/p442607.html
http://rodsrailpage.fotopic.net/p442677.html

It says in the caption in the photos that it derailed from a buckled rail and went down an embankment.

 
smalle Station Master

Location: Warragul

I recall taking a couple of photos on-site at the time.

I'll try to find them and post them.

 
skitz Chief Commissioner

B67 would be a good source of information.

 
RM62 Deputy Commissioner

It derailed and rolled down an embankment and ended up on its side, Suprisingly there was no loss of life

 
crivens Junior Train Controller

On the same day there was a huge derailment at South Yarra. I have them both off the news on video.

 
B 67 Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Gippsland

I remember it well. Had I left school 30 seconds earlier, I'd have been on that train.  I was in year 12 (Warragul Tech) and on several days per week, I was able to leave in the early afternoon and went home on the train. This particular day I was just stepping out the door when a teacher called me back to help out with something. I remember considering pretending I didn't hear him half-way down the corridor, but I stopped and turned around to see what he wanted. Anyway, it meant that I had to get a bus home to Longwarry instead.   Evil or Very Mad

Of course as the bus passed the derailment site I noticed the N set sitting on the embankment at odd angles - but no loco - which I later found had rolled down the other side.  Dad and I went back to Drouin later for an inspection. I was able to walk right up to the loco - which looked as if it had been lying there for years. The next day my dad went back and took the photo above (by which time it had become an off-limits zone). The N set was sitting in one of Drouin's sidings. Although there were no serious injuries to passengers (there were only 5 passengers) I noticed that the window at the west end of the N set where I usually sat, was the only one that had been broken, so who knows what may have happened if I'd been on the train?

I have some newspaper photos of the accident too. I shall scan them and post them later.

 
skitz Chief Commissioner

The scrub looks reasonably lush, what time of year was it and was the cause a heat buckle?  Do you know any of the details of the cause?

 
smalle Station Master

Location: Warragul

I managed to find one of the photos I took.

http://john690.fotopic.net/c1087488.html

As B67 recalls, it was dramatic news locally. I always wondered how the N set managed to remain standing and apparantly nearly undamaged.

I remember watching a bulldozer dragging L1163 from where it stopped at the base of the embankment to a nearby road where I presume it was loaded onto a low-loader.

I think a lot of the damage showing on the photos posted by Comengs above would have been caused by this activity and not the derailment.

 
crivens Junior Train Controller

[quote="skitz"]The scrub looks reasonably lush, what time of year was it and was the cause a heat buckle?  Do you know any of the details of the cause?[/quote]

It happened on 2nd Feb 1985.

 
B 67 Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Gippsland

Here's some pics from The West Gippsland Trader and Warragul Gazette.



L 1163 lying on its side amongst the trees it demolished. The crew were very lucky not to get more than some bruising. The loco spun around so that the cab that had been facing Melbourne came to be facing Warragul. It may have been this that saved the crew. Had anyone been in the other cab, they would've been flung around with it.

I have heard that when people arrived on the scene (presumably the train guard and perhaps some passengers) they checked the "front" cab and found it to be empty. The crew then clambered out the "rear" cab.



Some of the twisted track. Two overhead stanchions were demolished here and later replaced by wooden ones. They remained in place until the overhead was dismantled.



L 1163 after having been dragged from the gully it had fallen into. There was no road beside the line on the south side of the embankment and the ground too soft for heavy cranes and trucks, so it was dragged to a gravel road some distance from the line.

 
B 67 Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Gippsland

The scrub looks reasonably lush, what time of year was it and was the cause a heat buckle?  Do you know any of the details of the cause?

- skitz

It happened on 2nd Feb 1985.

- crivens

Hmmm!  The Trader photos are from a copy dated Thursday, February 7. The accident happened on the previous Tuesday at 3:15pm. Which should make it the 5th of Feb, 1985.   The 2nd was a Saturday, and I definately didn't go to school on a Saturday.   Shocked

 
skitz Chief Commissioner

Cool, thanks for the info.

I would have been in grade four back then, strange thing is I dont recall it at all given that it was just up the road from my home town Traf.

I wonder how many serious derailment have happened since with the Vline pass fleet, Werribee comes to mind with Westcoast.  The Drouine incident was pretty serious

 
DirtyBallast Deputy Commissioner

Location: Your town.

Amazingly for my age, I can't remember this incident. However, I do remember that an L Class broke down in the Haunted Hills between Moe and Morwell in the late 1970's, only for the rescuing loco to crash into it!

 
skitz Chief Commissioner

Amazingly for my age, I can't remember this incident. However, I do remember that an L Class broke down in the Haunted Hills between Moe and Morwell in the late 1970's, only for the rescuing loco to crash into it!

- DirtyBallast

I remember that one as a little tacker, one of the loco in the stack was returned to Moe and was under the freight shed (open shed) for a little while

 
Rodo Chief Commissioner

Location: Southern Riverina

Interesting, in all my rail stuff ups the locos remained firmly attached to the train but in some cases recieved more damage.

 

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