Woerden train disaster
The Woerden train accident was a railway accident on 21 November 1960 at around 20:10 in Woerden, the Netherlands near the Cattenbroek rail crossing. The train involved in the crash, a DM80760 / Fac BD, was a British train from Hanover, Germany to Hook of Holland, the Netherlands with 151 furloughs including some 10 women and several children; the train driver failed to notice a temporary speed limit. The train crashed; the train broke behind the second carriage and six of the eleven carriages derailed and tilted partially. Two people died, three people were injured and tens more received minor injuries. Ambulances from surrounding places were summoned; the rescue operation was difficult because the site of the disaster was only accessible through a muddy country road. People had to be carried on a stretcher over a few hundred meters to the ambulances, before it was better organized later; some military personnel helped during the rescue operation while others were sent to Woerden railway station.
Around 100 people of the Nederlandse Spoorwegen started the cleanup with cutting torches. Hours after the disaster the unharmed people were brought to Gouda by bus from where they were transported to Hook of Holland by train; the tracks were blocked in both directions. The overhead wire was destroyed and the overhead supports had fallen on the tracks; the cleanup work was continued through the whole night and in the early morning, after the day of the crash, train traffic was resumed on one track. Train cranes were able to lift some carriages back on the track in the morning. During the day after the crash the president of the Nederlandse Spoorwegen, ir. J. Lohman, visited the disaster site. One of the two people, killed was Heinz Schmodta, a 62-year-old German cook; the other person was a 31-year-old British able seaman from Dunham. Just before the crash he went to the toilet in the fourth carriage and was crushed by the concertina effect. With the help of cutting torches his body was removed from the train.
The people who were injured included a conductor, train driver, hurled out of the train. Due to track works there was a temporary speed limit of 40 km/h, indicated with special signs. According to statements the train rode with a speed of 90 km/h. Video on YouTube
Severn Railway Bridge
The Severn Railway Bridge was a bridge carrying the railway across the River Severn between Sharpness and Lydney, Gloucestershire. It was built in the 1870s by the Severn Bridge Railway Company to carry coal from the Forest of Dean to the docks at Sharpness; when the company got into financial difficulties in 1893, it was taken over jointly by the Great Western Railway and the Midland Railway companies. The bridge continued to be used for freight and passenger services until 1960, saw temporary extra traffic on the occasions that the Severn Tunnel was closed for engineering work; the bridge was constructed by Hamilston's Windsor Ironworks Company Limited of Liverpool. It had twenty-two spans; the pier columns were bolted together and filled with concrete. The twenty-one regular wrought iron spans were put in place, as well as the southernmost span, the swinging bridge over the Gloucester and Sharpness Canal; the bridge was 4,162 ft long and 70 ft above high water, a total of 6,800 long tons of iron being used in its construction.
A number of accidents took place at the bridge over the years, with vessels colliding with the piers, due to the hazardous nature of the waterway. In 1960, two river barges hit one of the piers on the bridge, causing two spans to collapse into the river. Repair work was under consideration when a similar collision occurred the following year, after which it was decided that it would be uneconomical to repair the bridge, it was demolished with few traces remaining. For more than fifty years before the Severn Railway Bridge was opened, there had been discussion and various proposals for rail routes to cross the Severn, either by a bridge or a tunnel, but most of these did not leave the drawing board; the exception was a tunnel near Newnham-on-Severn in 1810. The damage was irreparable and the project abandoned. In 1845, an ambitious project by Isambard Kingdom Brunel was to bridge the Severn near Awre for his projected South Wales Railway, bypassing Gloucester completely; this plan did not proceed.
Other schemes were mooted and in 1871, six different schemes were under consideration. The Severn Bridge Railway's scheme was approved by Parliament and received Royal Assent on 18 July 1872; the Severn Railway Bridge was built by the Severn Bridge Railway Company to transport coal from the Forest of Dean on the Severn and Wye Railway. At the time it was expected that the amount of coal freighted would increase year by year and the existence of a bridge would remove the necessity for the coal to be shipped via Gloucester. Work began in 1875 and was completed in 1879; the first span across the Gloucester and Sharpness Canal, which ran parallel to the Severn at this point, operated as a swing bridge. The twenty-one fixed spans, in order of erection from the south-east side, consisted of 13 of length 134 ft, 5 of length 174 ft, 2 of length 312 ft, a single span of length 134 ft; the bridge incorporated 6,800 long tons of iron. It was approached from the south-east by a two-arch masonry viaduct on the canal embankment leading to the swing-bridge, on the north-west by a 12-arch viaduct about 70 ft high.
The river with its large tidal range and strong currents made construction difficult. The pier columns were formed of about 10 ft in diameter. Near the west bank, the bedrock was a long way below the shifting sands so much work had to prepare firm foundations. Staging was used through which the sections were lowered by chains, when in place, filled with concrete. Near the east bank, a primitive piling machine was used to drive the sections through a ridge of clay; the staging was extended upwards for use while assembling the spans. The spans were assembled on site. Staging was laid and rails put in place to carry a travelling crane; the long beams were hoisted in place first, followed by the vertical bracings, the outer and inner plates of the top chordal trusses and the diagonals. The whole structure was bolted together at first, riveted by blacksmiths using hand-operated forges; some individual spans were completed within a week, with contractors being complimented on the efficiency of their work.
The main contractor was Hamilston's Windsor Ironworks Company Limited of Liverpool. They were tasked with the founding and erection of the pier cylinders on the riverbed, the erection and riveting of the twenty-one bowstring spans and the swing bridge over the Gloucester and Sharpness Canal, they were responsible for another swing bridge on the North Docks Branch of the line close to the New Docks at Sharpness. The company manufactured the wrought iron structures for the bridge. Project manager George Earle was given a watch praising his ability and enthusiasm for carrying out the project; the engineers for the project were George William Keeling. The bridge carried a single track railway line; when it came into service, it took 30 miles off the journey from Bristol to Cardiff, with trains no longer having to pass through Gloucester. The bridge predated the construction of the Severn Tunnel, a dozen miles or so down
A railcar, in British English and Australian English, is a self-propelled railway vehicle designed to transport passengers. The term "railcar" is used in reference to a train consisting of a single coach, with a driver's cab at one or both ends; some railway companies, such as the Great Western, termed such vehicles "railmotors". Self-propelled passenger vehicles capable of hauling a train are, in technical rail usage, more called "rail motor coaches" or "motor cars"; the term is sometimes used as an alternative name for the small types of multiple unit which consist of more than one coach. That is the general usage nowadays in Ireland when referring to any diesel multiple unit, or in some cases electric multiple unit. In North America the term "railcar" has a much broader sense and can be used to refer to any item of hauled rolling-stock, whether passenger coaches or goods wagons. In its simplest form, a "railcar" may be little more than a motorized railway handcar or draisine, otherwise known as a speeder.
Railcars are economic to run for light passenger loads because of their small size, in many countries are used to run passenger services on minor railway lines, such as rural railway lines where passenger traffic is sparse, where the use of a longer train would not be cost effective. A famous example of this in the United States was the Galloping Goose railcars of the Rio Grande Southern Railroad, whose introduction allowed the discontinuance of steam passenger service on the line and prolonged its life considerably. Railcars have been employed on premier services. In New Zealand, although railcars were used on regional services, the Blue Streak and Silver Fern railcars were used on the North Island Main Trunk between Wellington and Auckland and offered a higher standard of service than previous carriage trains. In Australia, the Savannahlander operates a tourist service from the coastal town of Cairns to Forsayth, Traveltrain operates the Gulflander between Normanton and Croydon in the Gulf Country of northern Queensland.
William Bridges Adams built steam railcars at London in the 1840s. Many British railway companies tried steam railcars but they were not successful and were replaced by push-pull trains. Sentinel Waggon Works was one British builder of steam railcars. In Belgium, M. A. Cabany of Mechelen designed steam railcars, his first was exhibited at a Paris exhibition. This may have been the Exposition Universelle; the steam boiler was supplied by the Boussu Works and there was accommodation for First and Third-class passengers and their luggage. There was a locker for dogs underneath. Fifteen were built and they worked in the Hainaut and Antwerp districts. In 1904 the Automotor Journal reported that one railway after another had been realising that motor coaches could be used to handle light traffic on their less important lines; the North-Eastern railways had been experimenting “for some time” in this direction, Wolseley provided them with a flat-four engine capable of up to 100 bhp for this purpose. The engine drove a main dynamo to power two electric drive motors, a smaller dynamo to charge accumulators to power the interior lighting and allow electric starting of the engine.
The controls for the dynamo allowed the coach to be driven from either end. For further details see 1903 Petrol Electric Autocar. Another early railcar in the UK was designed by James Sidney Drewry and made by the Drewry Car Co. in 1906. In 1908 the manufacture was contracted out to the Birmingham Small Arms Company. While early railcars were propelled by steam and diesel engines, modern railcars are propelled by a diesel engine mounted underneath the floor of the coach. Diesel railcars may have hydraulic or diesel-electric transmission. Electric railcars on mainline electric systems are rare, since electrification implies heavy usage where single cars or short trains would not be economic. Exceptions to this rule were found for example in Sweden or Switzerland; some vehicles on tram and interurban systems, like the Red Car of the Pacific Electric Railway, can be seen as railcars. Experiments with battery-electric railcars were conducted from around 1890 in Belgium, France and Italy. In the USA, railcars of the Edison-Beach type, with nickel-iron batteries were used from 1911.
In New Zealand, a battery-electric Edison railcar operated from 1926 to 1934. The Drumm nickel-zinc battery was used on four 2-car sets between 1932 and 1946 on the Harcourt Street Line in Ireland and British Railways used lead-acid batteries in a railcar in 1958. Between 1955 and 1995 DB railways operated 232 DB Class ETA 150 railcars utilising lead-acid batteries; as with any other battery electric vehicle, the drawback is the limited range, and/or expense of the battery. An example of a new application for zero emission vehicles for rail environments such as subways is the Cater MetroTrolley which carries ultrasonic flaw detection instrumentation. A new breed of modern lightweight aerodynamically designed diesel or electric regional railcars that can operate as single vehicles or in trains are becoming popular in Europe and Japan, replacing the first-generation railbuses and second-generation DMU railcars running on lesser-used main-line railways and in some cases in exclusive lanes in urban areas.
Like many high-end DMUs, these
Hradec Králové is a city of the Czech Republic, in the Hradec Králové Region of Bohemia. The city's economy is based on food-processing technology, photochemical, EMS and IT. Traditional industries include musical instrument manufacturing – the best known being PETROF pianos; the University of Hradec Králové is located in the city, the University of Defense has its only medical faculty in Hradec Králové and Charles University in Prague has its Faculty of Medicine in Hradec Králové and Faculty of Pharmacy there. The city lies at the confluence of the Elbe and the Orlice rivers close to Krkonoše, the highest of Czech mountains, with its peak, Sněžka, at 1602m; the original name of one of the oldest settlements in the Czech Republic was Hradec. In Latin, the Castle of the Queen was called Grecz Reginae, the original German Königingrätz was shortened to Königgrätz by 1800, it remained a dowry town until 1620. Hradec Králové was the first town to declare for the national cause during the Hussite Wars in the first half of the 15th century.
After the Battle of White Mountain, a large segment of the Protestant population left the area. In 1639 the town was occupied for eight months by the Swedes. Several churches and convents were pulled down to make way for fortifications erected under Joseph II; the Battle of Königgrätz, the decisive battle of the Austro-Prussian War, took place on 3 July 1866 near Hradec Králové. This event is commemorated in the famous "Königgrätzer Marsch". Moreover, the battle put an end to the age of fortifications, which were destroyed in 1884; the city is situated in the centre of a fertile region called the Golden Road, at the confluence of Elbe and Orlice, contains many buildings of historical and architectural interest. The Cathedral of the Holy Spirit was founded in 1303 by Elizabeth, the church of St. John, built in 1710, stands on the ruins of the old castle. During the 1920s and 1930s the city grew thanks to decisions made by the heads of the city to develop a modern city, which included razing the fortress and opening the town for expansion.
During this era many buildings of modern architecture were built, Hradec Králové became known as the Salon of the Republic. This nickname was given to the city by its citizens who were enamored by the architecture of Josef Gočár and Jan Kotěra. Hradec Králové Airport is a public domestic and private international airport located about 3 km from the city centre. There are no scheduled flights operating to the airport, it is sometimes visited by private jet traffic. Every May, an Air Ambulance Show is held for both Air Ambulance personnel; every June an international theatre festival, takes place. Since 2004 the city hosts one of the biggest European hip hop festivals, in August. Since 2007 the city hosts Rock for the biggest rock festival in the Czech Republic, in July. "Jazz goes to town", an international jazz festival, is held in Hradec Králové every October. The city's museum holds one of the oldest surviving collections of Czech Renaissance polyphony, the Codex Speciálník manuscript; the city is home to one of the Czech Republic's leading orchestras, the Hradec Králové Philharmonic Orchestra.
The ice hockey club of Hradec Králové is Mountfield HK. The most successful football club is FC Hradec Králové, which plays in the Czech National Football League; the women's basketball team, Hradecké Lvice, plays in the national women basketball league. Josef Čapek, writer, poet Avigdor Dagan, Israeli diplomat Josef Gočár, architect Jiří Horák, 1st Chairman of Czech Social Democratic Party Viktor Mucha, dermatologist Jiří Petr, Rector Emeritus, Czech University of Agriculture Prague František Plesnivý, architect Baron Carl von Rokitansky, pathologist Jan Šindel, mathematician Otakar Vávra, film director Dušan Salfický, hockey player Vít Jedlička, president of Liberland Václav Snítil, violinist Václav Kliment Klicpera, founder of Klicpera theatre, dramatist Bohuslav Balbín, geographer, writer Kateřina Siniaková, professional tennis player Sonja Vectomov, musical artist Antonín Petrof, piano maker Hradec Králové is twinned with: There are two cooperating towns: Biskupské gymnázium Bohuslava Balbína Cathedral of the Holy Spirit New Hradec, North Dakota Official website Photo gallery with a map Virtual show
The Czech Republic known by its short-form name, Czechia, is a landlocked country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west, Austria to the south, Slovakia to the east and Poland to the northeast. The Czech Republic covers an area of 78,866 square kilometres with a temperate continental climate and oceanic climate, it is a unitary parliamentary republic, with 10.6 million inhabitants. Other major cities are Brno, Ostrava and Pilsen; the Czech Republic is a member of the European Union, NATO, the OECD, the United Nations, the OSCE, the Council of Europe. It is a developed country with an advanced, high income export-oriented social market economy based in services and innovation; the UNDP ranks the country 14th in inequality-adjusted human development. The Czech Republic is a welfare state with a "continental" European social model, a universal health care system, tuition-free university education and is ranked 14th in the Human Capital Index, it ranks as the 6th safest or most peaceful country and is one of the most non-religious countries in the world, while achieving strong performance in democratic governance.
The Czech Republic includes the historical territories of Bohemia and Czech Silesia. The Czech state was formed in the late 9th century as the Duchy of Bohemia under the Great Moravian Empire. After the fall of the Empire in 907, the centre of power transferred from Moravia to Bohemia under the Přemyslid dynasty. In 1002, the duchy was formally recognized as an Imperial State of the Holy Roman Empire along with the Kingdom of Germany, the Kingdom of Burgundy, the Kingdom of Italy, numerous other territories, becoming the Kingdom of Bohemia in 1198 and reaching its greatest territorial extent in the 14th century. Beside Bohemia itself, the King of Bohemia ruled the lands of the Bohemian Crown, holding a vote in the election of the Holy Roman Emperor. In the Hussite Wars of the 15th century driven by the Protestant Bohemian Reformation, the kingdom faced economic embargoes and defeated five consecutive crusades proclaimed by the leaders of the Catholic Church. Following the Battle of Mohács in 1526, the whole Crown of Bohemia was integrated into the Habsburg Monarchy alongside the Archduchy of Austria and the Kingdom of Hungary.
The Protestant Bohemian Revolt against the Catholic Habsburgs led to the Thirty Years' War. After the Battle of the White Mountain, the Habsburgs consolidated their rule, eradicated Protestantism and reimposed Catholicism, adopted a policy of gradual Germanization; this contributed to the anti-Habsburg sentiment. A long history of resentment of the Catholic Church followed and still continues. With the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, the Bohemian Kingdom became part of the German Confederation 1815-1866 as part of Austrian Empire and the Czech language experienced a revival as a consequence of widespread romantic nationalism. In the 19th century, the Czech lands became the industrial powerhouse of the monarchy and were subsequently the core of the Republic of Czechoslovakia, formed in 1918 following the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire after World War I. Czechoslovakia remained the only democracy in this part of Europe in the interwar period. However, the Czech part of Czechoslovakia was occupied by Germany in World War II, while the Slovak region became the Slovak Republic.
Most of the three millions of the German-speaking minority were expelled following the war. The Communist Party of Czechoslovakia won the 1946 elections and after the 1948 coup d'état, Czechoslovakia became a one-party communist state under Soviet influence. In 1968, increasing dissatisfaction with the regime culminated in a reform movement known as the Prague Spring, which ended in a Soviet-led invasion. Czechoslovakia remained occupied until the 1989 Velvet Revolution, when the communist regime collapsed and market economy was reintroduced. On 1 January 1993, Czechoslovakia peacefully dissolved, with its constituent states becoming the independent states of the Czech Republic and Slovakia; the Czech Republic joined NATO in 1999 and the EU in 2004. The traditional English name "Bohemia" derives from Latin "Boiohaemum", which means "home of the Boii"; the current English name comes from the Polish ethnonym associated with the area, which comes from the Czech word Čech. The name comes from the Slavic tribe and, according to legend, their leader Čech, who brought them to Bohemia, to settle on Říp Mountain.
The etymology of the word Čech can be traced back to the Proto-Slavic root *čel-, meaning "member of the people. The country has been traditionally divided into three lands, namely Bohemia in the west, Moravia in the east, Czech Silesia in the northeast. Known as the lands of the Bohemian Crown since the 14th century, a number of other names for the country have been used, including Czech/Bohemian lands, Bohemian Crown and the lands of the Crown of Saint Wenceslas; when the country regained its independence after the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian empire in 1918, the new name of Czechoslovakia was coined to reflect the union of the Czech and Slovak nations within the one country. After Czechoslovakia dissolved in 1992, the Czech part lac
Czechoslovakia, or Czecho-Slovakia, was a sovereign state in Central Europe that existed from October 1918, when it declared its independence from the Austro-Hungarian Empire, until its peaceful dissolution into the Czech Republic and Slovakia on 1 January 1993. From 1939 to 1945, following its forced division and partial incorporation into Nazi Germany, the state did not de facto exist but its government-in-exile continued to operate. From 1948 to 1990, Czechoslovakia was part of the Eastern Bloc with a command economy, its economic status was formalized in membership of Comecon from 1949 and its defense status in the Warsaw Pact of May 1955. A period of political liberalization in 1968, known as the Prague Spring, was forcibly ended when the Soviet Union, assisted by several other Warsaw Pact countries, invaded. In 1989, as Marxist–Leninist governments and communism were ending all over Europe, Czechoslovaks peacefully deposed their government in the Velvet Revolution. In 1993, Czechoslovakia split into the two sovereign states of Slovakia.
Form of state1918 – 1938: A democratic republic championed by Tomáš Masaryk. 1938 – 1939: After annexation of Sudetenland by Nazi Germany in 1938, the region turned into a state with loosened connections among the Czech and Ruthenian parts. A large strip of southern Slovakia and Carpatho-Ukraine was annexed by Hungary, the Zaolzie region was annexed by Poland. 1939 – 1945: The region was split into the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia and the Slovak Republic. A government-in-exile continued to exist in London, supported by the United Kingdom, United States and their Allies. Czechoslovakia adhered to the Declaration by United Nations and was a founding member of the United Nations. 1946 – 1948: The country was governed by a coalition government with communist ministers, including the prime minister and the minister of interior. Carpathian Ruthenia was ceded to the Soviet Union. 1948 – 1989: The country became a socialist state under Soviet domination with a centrally planned economy. In 1960, the country became a socialist republic, the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic.
It was a satellite state of the Soviet Union. 1969 – 1990: The federal republic consisted of the Czech Socialist Republic and the Slovak Socialist Republic. 1990 – 1992: Following the Velvet Revolution, the state was renamed the Czech and Slovak Federal Republic, consisting of the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic, reverted to a democratic republic. NeighboursAustria 1918 – 1938, 1945 – 1992 Germany Hungary Poland Romania 1918 – 1938 Soviet Union 1945 – 1991 Ukraine 1991 – 1992 TopographyThe country was of irregular terrain; the western area was part of the north-central European uplands. The eastern region was composed of the northern reaches of the Carpathian Mountains and lands of the Danube River basin. ClimateThe weather is mild summers. Influenced by the Atlantic Ocean from the west, Baltic Sea from the north, Mediterranean Sea from the south. There is no continental weather. 1918–1920: Republic of Czechoslovakia /Czecho-Slovak State, or Czecho-Slovakia/Czechoslovakia 1920–1938: Czechoslovak Republic, or Czechoslovakia 1938–1939: Czecho-Slovak Republic, or Czecho-Slovakia 1945–1960: Czechoslovak Republic, or Czechoslovakia 1960–1990: Czechoslovak Socialist Republic, or Czechoslovakia April 1990: Czechoslovak Federative Republic and Czecho-Slovak Federative Republic The country subsequently became the Czech and Slovak Federative Republic, or Československo and Česko-Slovensko.
The area was long a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire until the empire collapsed at the end of World War I. The new state was founded by Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, who served as its first president from 14 November 1918 to 14 December 1935, he was succeeded by his close ally, Edvard Beneš. The roots of Czech nationalism go back to the 19th century, when philologists and educators, influenced by Romanticism, promoted the Czech language and pride in the Czech people. Nationalism became a mass movement in the second half of the 19th century. Taking advantage of the limited opportunities for participation in political life under Austrian rule, Czech leaders such as historian František Palacký founded many patriotic, self-help organizations which provided a chance for many of their compatriots to participate in communal life prior to independence. Palacký supported Austro-Slavism and worked for a reorganized and federal Austrian Empire, which would protect the Slavic speaking peoples of Central Europe against Russian and German threats.
An advocate of democratic reform and Czech autonomy within Austria-Hungary, Masaryk was elected twice to the Reichsrat, first from 1891 to 1893 for the Young Czech Party, again from 1907 to 1914 for the Czech Realist Party, which he had founded in 1889 with Karel Kramář and Josef Kaizl. During World War I small numbers of Czechs, the Czechoslovak Legions, fought with the Allies in France and Italy, while large numbers deserted to Russia in exchange for its support for the independence of Czechoslovakia from the Austrian Empire. With the outbreak of World War I, Masaryk began working for Czech independence in a union with Slovakia. With Edvard Beneš and Milan Rastislav Štefánik, Masaryk visited several Western countries and won support from influential publicists. Bohemia and Moravi
A train wreck or train crash is a type of disaster involving one or more trains. Train wrecks occur as a result of miscommunication, as when a moving train meets another train on the same track. Train wrecks have been covered in popular media and in folklore. A head-on collision between two trains is colloquially called a "cornfield meet" in the US. Aldrich, Mark. Death Rode the Rails: American Railroad Accidents and Safety, 1828-1965 excerpt BBC News: World's worst rail disasters A signalman. A voice from the signal-box: or, railway accidents and their causes. London: Longmans, Green, & Co