Train Wreck

Train Wreck

The Forensics of Rail Disasters

Book - 2012
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Book News
Turning to science and eyewitness accounts, Bibel (engineering, U. of North Dakota) examines the reasons trains crash, what happens when they do, and what safety improvements have been implemented from these railroad disasters. Detailing seventeen crashes with more than two hundred casualties, these intriguing tales of science and tragedy explore runaway trains, bearing failures, metal fatigue, crash testing, collision dynamics, and bad rails. The book contains illustrations, an epilogue about safety in the modern era, and extensive notes and is intended for general readers and those interested in engineering. Annotation ©2012 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

Johns Hopkins University Press

Trains are massive—with some weighing 15,000 tons or more. When these metal monsters collide or go off the rails, their destructive power becomes clear. In this book, George Bibel presents riveting tales of trains gone wrong, the detective work of finding out why, and the safety improvements that were born of tragedy.

Train Wreck details numerous crashes, including 17 in which more than 200 people were killed. Readers follow investigators as they sift through the rubble and work with computerized event recorders to figure out what happened. Using a mix of eyewitness accounts and scientific explanations, Bibel draws us into a world of forensics and human drama.

Train Wreck is a fascinating exploration of
• runaway trains
• bearing failures
• metal fatigue
• crash testing
• collision dynamics
• bad rails

Publisher: Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, c2012
Description: 355 p. : ill. ; 24 cm
ISBN: 9781421406527
Branch Call Number: 363.12265 Bib


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Mar 11, 2013

A technical book about the ways that railroad equipment has been improved, over the past 150 years, for greater productivity and safety. Many contemporary examples of railroad accidents in the United States, Canada and elsewhere are used to illustrate the contributing causes. Each chapter has endnotes and references. The text is supplemented with photographs and simple diagrams. The main focus is mechanical failure of the railroad equipment and rails. Human factors engineering and human fatigue are not included.

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