Revisiting Amtrak’s Worst


Welcome back to Legacies…On The Rails and thanks for continuing to follow! I decided that here in 2017 I wanted to get more creative with more varied topics and guests not only here on the Blog, but also on the Podcast on, as well as being more consistent as I stated in my last posting. This being my 2nd Blog in 2017 has me already halfway to my total number of postings in 2016 and it will only get better from here!

This edition of Legacies…On The Rails the blog, and the next upcoming podcast brought to you by The Cupcakin’ Bakery 2311 E 12th St Kansas City, Mo 64127 (816)-813-4880! A great place to satisfy that sweet-tooth after a long day of railfanning! Go see Erica Harris soon and tell her “The Losh-Man” sent ya! You’ll be glad ya’ did!

First let me say that the posting you are about to read is in now way, shape or form, meant to shed a negative light on Amtrak or passenger rail travel as a whole, as I am a seriously wholehearted supporter of both and always will be. And I never actually went looking for this topic, it just kind of found me recently.

As a You Tube user, I not only have my own channel as you are aware, but I also subscribe to many, many other channels. This ranges from Faith-Centered Channels to Classic Sci-Fi (Star Trek, Star Wars, Classic Battlestar Galactica), to World War II Battleships, Aircraft Carriers and Aircraft and Submarines, to Classic TV and movies in general, Old Time Radio, but especially as a railfan and rail blogger, photographer, videographer and podcaster,  I definitely subscribe, as I do on Facebook and other social media to a ton…..of real and model train related channels both classic and present day.

So, one day last week when I opened You Tube, in my various channel subscriptions were some videos on the 1993 wreck of Amtrak’s Sunset Limited. Also known as the Big Bayou Canot Train Wreck,
it took place September 22nd, 1993 when several cars of the sleeper train headed toward
the city of Savannah, Georgia went careening off a bridge into the gator infested Big Canot Bayou in Alabama,taking 47 lives with it. Below is the “Seconds From Disaster” story from You Tube.

Once I saw the videos, I was reminded of the man whose comforting voice kept me company on my drives home from work after I worked 3pm-11pm shifts for the past 8 years until just this week,  as he preached the word of God on my local Bott Radio Station.

That man is Dr R.C. Sproul of Ligonier Ministries and I recalled that some time ago, I had heard Dr Sproul share how he and his wife were survivors of Amtrak‘s worst train disaster to date, the wreck of the Sunset Limited. So I decided I wanted it to be the subject of my first new blog strategy for 2017 and I sent a Facebook message t0 Ligonier Ministries and asked for a link to that message, explaining how I wanted to utilize it. Their staff were extremely gracious and got back to me very quickly, which I would like to express my sincere gratitude for.

So , here is the link to Dr Sproul‘s message that you can find by clicking below: . I hope that it is a blessing to you as well as a reminder that life is indeed very short, that no one is guaranteed tomorrow and either has you rejoicing that you know the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, or has you realizing your need for Him in your life before it’s too late, just as life ended so quickly for the 47 people lost in the
wreck of the Sunset Limited.

And just as I always encourage everyone at the end of my blogs and videos to continue to follow the Lord Jesus Christ every day and when it comes to trains, Continue Leaving Legacies…On The Rails, I thought that there would be others that might benefit from hearing Dr Spoul‘s story. First, as a testament of God’s grace and provision, but also for the railfan aspect.

Here is the story of Brian Logan, another survivor of the Sunset Limited disaster.

Although the wreck of the Sunset Limited is still the worst loss of life to date in a specifically Amtrak crash, like any rail line, it was far from the first ever Amtrak crash, and the 12th since 2010. This includes:

5/13/10-Amtrak Piedmont Mebane, NC-11 injured
6/3/11-BN Commuter Train, Amtrak heading to Carbondale, Ill collide at Chicago Union Station-5 injured
6/24/11-Amtrak California Zephyr
10/12/11-Amtrak San Joaquin collides w/ Coast Starlight Train in Oakland, Calif-17 injured
02/01/12-Amtrak Wolverine from Pontiac, MI to Chicago-6 injured
10/01/12-Amtrak Oakland California to Bakersfield-50 injured
11/29/12-Amtrak Silver Star in Orlando, Fla-10 injured
10/28/14-Amtrak/Semi collision-24 injured
03/09/15-Amtrak vs Tractor/Trailer in Hallifax, NC
10/05/15-Amtrak crash near Northfield, VT
03/04/16-Amtrak Southwest Chief crash 20 miles west of Dodge City, KS-32 injured
04/03/16-Amtrak crash in Chester, PA-31 injured.

And these are all actually minor in comparison to much larger rail accidents just in the continental United States throughout history.  And, again, while I will always encourage travel by rail, always enjoy a rail excursion with my family when I can and hope to include Amtrak among those sometime soon, just a reminder that anything in life has its risks.

As always,this is John LoshThe Losh-Man” reminding you as I mentioned earlier to continue to follow the Lord Jesus Christ each day, and yes, when it comes to trains, Continue Leaving Legacies…On The Rails! I’ll see you next time!


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