RAILWAY REUNION: Former night officer at the Kabra Railway Station, Alan Rogers, with Cr Ellen Smith at the reunion.
RAILWAY REUNION: Former night officer at the Kabra Railway Station, Alan Rogers, with Cr Ellen Smith at the reunion. Contributed

Kabra resident remembers train collision

DESPITE being very young at the time, Kabra resident Arthur McDonald still remembered how Jim McEvoy manage to save nearly 70 lives.

Yesterday, he told me the story of the 1955 during a train collision at the township.

On Saturday, he was one of the 52 people who attended a railway reunion held at Kabra Hotel to commemorate the crash which occurred on the Mount Morgan rail line.

Alan Rogers served as the night officer at Kabra Railway Station when the incident took place.

He received a telephone message to notify him that a runaway coal train was coming down the main line.

Mr Rogers immediately made a call to Jim McEvoy, whose property was close to the the rail line so that he could grab the attention of the passenger train driver, Colin Etherden.

"Jim McEvoy waved his shirt above his head as he ran down the paddock,” Mr McDonald said.

His plan succeeded and luckily no one were injured.

Mr Etherden yelled a warning to the passengers, before he put the train in reverse and jumped clear of the incoming coal train.

However, both of the engines still managed to become locked together and derailed as a result of the impact.

Arthur McDonald said a lot of the passengers who escaped from the train were Mount Morgan Mine employees on their way to work.

He explained Kabra once served as a freight terminal for the rich gold-mining town.

Rockhampton Regional councillor Ellen Smith joined in the reunion and said there were two bus trips to the crash site.

She said Mr McDonald shared his knowledge of the event to the passengers on both trips where he joined them to visit the crash site.

Not only did Mr McDonald relive a lot of memories at the reunion but said everyone in attendance enjoyed themselves and reminisced on the collision.



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