Evidence left of the accident
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Is there any physical evidence remaining of the wreck? According to Mr. Richard Schmal, Lowell Historian, the marks made by the broken wheel still exist. To check for myself, I visited my hometown February 25, 2000 and shot these pictures.
If you look close enough, on the third tie from the steel plate, there is an indentation in the tie. According to Mr. Schmal this is the impact point where the broken wheel first jumped. The section of track lies approximately 50 yards north of the Main Street crossing, Lowell, IN.
Picture 2 is the same scene, taken from the west side of the track. The gouge is slightly more pronounced.
Picture 3 is looking south from the steel plate. If you look close enough there are visible marks along the ties. Could these marks be made by the broken wheel bouncing, or dragging along the way? Mr. Schmal believes they are. I walked south from the impact site to the Washington Street crossing, then to the Oakley Street crossing. There was a pattern to these marks. They stopped at the crossing, about the location of the old siding turnout, where it is believed cars started derailing. There are no such marks north of the impact site either.
Same view. Some people may argue that these marks are common, however, after walking close to 100 yards north of the impact site and south to the Oakley Street crossing, these are the only marks I found on the ties. Pretty convincing evidence.
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