Summit Lake Slide

April 2nd 1999
Bob Eley
Engineer Shuswap Sub.

Just came in off the Shuswap sub. Had a little excitement tonight. Approaching 3 Valley, the RTC click for enlargementinformed us that he suddenly had an occupancy on his board between 3 Valley and Clanwilliam. We obtained a 564 to enter the block and proceeded at Restricted Speed, looking for the problem. As we entered the first tunnel at mi. 9.5 (along Summit Lake), it was apparent that something was blocking the east portal of the tunnel. I stopped the train and realized that we were looking at a wall of dirt, trees, and rocks. The portal was plugged with debris about as tall as the unit. The force of the slide tore the concrete face of click for enlargementthe tunnel off, leaving large chunks of concrete dangling from the ceiling, suspended by strings of re-bar. Upon further investigation, we found that the slide was about 50 feet wide, basically from the portal of our tunnel to the portal of the next. The CPR mainline there will be closed for at least 12 hours, probably longer. They can't do anything until daylight, when they will be able to see if there is anything else to come down. There is nowhere to put the debris at that spot- lake on one side, mountain on the other. They will have to load it into airdumps and move it somewhere else. All I can think about is that if the slide had not caused any track damage, and thus set the signals off, we would have been travelling at 30 mph and would never have stopped. I am sure that in that case, I would not be here telling my story. Oh well, just another boring day on the rails.


Photo's by Greg Sherwood
and G. Calay

clickfor enlargement Click for enlargement click for enlargement click for enlargent

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