My Two Worst Days with the CPR True Stories From Jack Buller

From the Article

True stories from Jack Buller, as told to Tom W. Parkin.

The grade coming into Caithness is downhill, so we didn’t require engine power. As we approached the siding, our train was moving on a long curve and we could see our meet clearly on the mainline. My firebox required attention, so I was busy shaking the grates and upgrading my fire when Scottie suddenly yelled: ”Jump, kid!”

I looked out and saw we were moving about 15 miles per hour and headed straight for a collision.

The brakeman riding our pilot was also looking around, figuring which way to offload. We were going too fast for him to reach the siding switch ahead, which was aligned for the mainline. The opposing train was in the clear, but still coming to a stop short of the switch.

I scrambled the ladder part way down, then took a leap, cleared a four-foot fence and didn’t stop running until I reached the caboose of the train we collided with.

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