Strasburg 475 Accident: On Wednesday, an accident with an excavator occurred on the Strasburg Rail Road, causing damage to the front end of a locomotive that had previously been used by Norfolk & Western. The incident did not result in anyone sustaining injuries.
The locomotive was reportedly running around its train at Paradise, Pennsylvania, when it went through a misaligned switch and directly into an excavator used for maintenance of the right of way, as shown in multiple videos of the incident that were posted online, including a Livestream conducted by Virtual Railfan.
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The excavator’s bucket created a hole in the smokebox of the locomotive as it was driven over it. According to the video, the Strasburg personnel wave to the passengers on the other track as they run past the excursion train. If this is what happened, it is possible that this distracted them from detecting the misaligned switch in time to come to a safe stop.
A different locomotive was used to convey the train back to Strasburg, and later in the day, the railroad sent one of its diesel switchers to send the injured 475 back to the shop. A blue tarp was used to cover the front of the locomotive before it was driven.