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Accident Report Detail

Rear End Collision of Two Union Pacific Freight Trains

Executive Summary

About 2:41 a.m., m.s.t., on March 29, 1979, Union Pacific Railroad (UP) freight train Extra 3449 West struck the rear of UP unit coal train Extra 3055 West as it was moving from the No. 1 main track into a siding at Ramsey, Wyoming. Two train crewmembers were killed and three crewmembers were injured. The 3 locomotive units of Extra 3449 West and 23 cars were derailed. Total damage was estimated to be $1,121,000.

Probable Cause

The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the accident was the failure of the engineer of Extra 3449 West to comply with a series of restrictive wayside signals, repeated by locomotive cab signals, including a "stop-and-proceed" aspect 6,303 feet from the point of collision. Contributing to the accident was the unauthorized muting of the cab signal warning whistle, so that it could not alert the engineer when a more restrictive signal was passed.

Accident Location: Ramsey , WY    
Accident Date: 3/29/1979
Accident ID: 79797

Date Adopted: 8/16/1979
NTSB Number: RAR-79-09
NTIS Number: PB-299961/AS

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