Steam-powered trains crash near Dresden

An unfortunate incident on the Radebeul – Radeburg preserved route:

More than 50 people were injured, four seriously, when two narrow-gauge steam trains collided in Radebeul, Saxony, on Saturday evening.

Police began an investigation into the cause of the collision as work began Sunday to pull the wreckage of the historical L├Â├čnitzgrundbahn trains off the tracks.

Around 250 people were riding on both trains on the single-track route to celebrate the 125th anniversary of the line between Moritzburg and Radebeul.

Although the cause of the crash is not yet known, police said more trains were in operation than normal during festival to mark the anniversary.

The 52 injured included seven children under the age of ten, police said. Organisers cancelled the remainder of the festival after the crash.

Deutche Reichsbahn steam, 1989

Over coffee this morning, I ran across the YouTube channel of Dampfossi (“Ossi” was how “Wessis” from West Germany referred to the reunified Easterners). This Ossi has posted quite a few videos of Deutche Reichsbahn steam from before the fall of the Berlin Wall, including what is now the Harzquerbahn and the Weisseritztalbahn.

My introduction to the Freital (Hainsburg) – Kurort Kipsdorf line came at the Seifersdorf station as shown above. The gritty reality of life under Communism was still apparent in many areas, including the Rabenau Gorge. If you weren’t there, Ossi’s videos give a good glimpse of the way it was.

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He also has fine coverage of Plandampfs in the 1990s, including this video of three 2-10-0s on a potash train during the “Kali Plandampf” in February 1998. (I had the good fortune to attend that event.)

Steam in Germany is still going strong – if you haven’t participated in a photo special there, I highly recommend signing up for one. You’ll find event listings in our Links Section.