Train splits

NW Mailing List nw-mailing-list at
Wed Oct 20 21:06:35 EDT 2010

When a train "breaks in two", it could be one of a number of reasons. Occasionally the air hoses may separate, possibly due to its hanging to low and hitting a road crossing, or some other obstacle between the rails. There are times when a knuckle of a coupler may break, due to a weak spot in the metal, or previous fracture, unnoticed by the car inspectors. Also, an entire drawhead can break for the same reasons. Of course, a derailment most times will cause the train line to separate, all of which causes an emergency brake application. It does not happen too terribly often, but more often than one might think.
Due to improvements in car construction and modern safety checks, such as dragging equipment detectors, it doesn't happen as often as it did 50+ years ago.
Jeff Sanders  

--- On Wed, 10/20/10, NW Mailing List <nw-mailing-list at> wrote:

From: NW Mailing List <nw-mailing-list at>
Subject: Train splits
To: "NW Mailing List" <NW-Mailing-List at>
Date: Wednesday, October 20, 2010, 6:38 PM

I was curious about something I heard the other day on one of Winston Link's recordings. He was riding in a caboose descending into Roanoke (I think) and the train split in two and went into "emergency". Could somebody comment on what exactly happened and how often would that occur? Thanks!

Mike Weeks
Greenville NC
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