'Lost' Mail train on Norwalk Branch

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urr304
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Nov 20, 2019 7:04 am

'Lost' Mail train on Norwalk Branch

Post by urr304 » Tue Nov 26, 2019 12:20 pm

I heard about this event about 45+ years ago, and did see an internet posting about 15 or so years ago, but have lost that link.

The story was in 1960's and that an eastbound NYC mail train went onto the Norwalk Branch at Millbury Jct via an opened switch and proceeded the entire length, rejoining the Main at Elyria. Somewhere the location of the train was known and was accommodated the remainder of its trip to Elyria.

Various questions come up such as why didn't the mail train stop before proceeding far since it had not received orders and a clearance form A since Norwalk Branch was T&TO. Also, what was outcome.

Believe posting from 15+ years ago had details, but just can't relocate.

Any further information out there?

shlustig
Posts: 1587
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2004 9:11 am

Re: 'Lost' Mail train on Norwalk Branch

Post by shlustig » Wed Nov 27, 2019 8:11 am

Yes, this incident did occur. Train was #14 (Mail & Express), and the Toledo East had very recently received TCS for the mainline Vickers to Berea. The tower at Millbury Jct. had been closed and Millbury Jct. became CP-281.

#14 received the proper sequence of signals to indicate that it was routed to the Norwalk Branch (Old Main Line). Since the Branch was regularly used as a detour route, the crew accepted the line-up and kept going thinking that the interlocking signal also conveyed permission under the Manual Block rules. Fortunately, there was no local traffic occupying the main track.

The confusion in the Dispatcher's office as to what had happened to #14 was cleared up when the agent at Fremont reported the train by and queried as to why no train orders had been issued.

#14 rejoined the mainline at Elyria Jct. (CP-207) and continued to Cleveland where the crew was removed from service pending investigation.

Given the full circumstances, my understanding is that the incident was treated largely as a learning experience and only moderate discipline was issued.

urr304
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Nov 20, 2019 7:04 am

Re: 'Lost' Mail train on Norwalk Branch

Post by urr304 » Sat Nov 30, 2019 8:02 pm

Thanks for the confirming details.

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