Monday, January 21, 1929 The Globe (Toronto) Page 1, col. 2

Roaring flood waters bring wide destruction to Ontario communities

Enormous damage done of Port Hope when river carries away bridges and store-fronts—Hundreds of milk cans swept from railway cars near Tillonsburg

Two lives lost in train wreck

London-Port Stanley train has narrow escape—Lake Erie harbors devastated when freshets pour in—Much stock drowned

 ..  Roy Post, aged 36, Trenton, C.N.R. engineer, and John Pekly, brakesman, lost their lives in a train wreck near Belleville, caused by a washout.  .. 


Tracks undermined.

The water flowed over the edge of Beamish's Pond, in the centre of the town, and undermined a portion of the Canadian National Railways tracks. Traffic to Peterboro' was disrupted, but late in the day trains came to the edge of the town, and passengers were transferred from that point by bus.  .. 

Freight meets accident.

Kingston, Jan. 20.—About noon on Saturday a Canadian National freight train, consisting of a locomotive and ten cars, met with a mishap three-quarters of a mile east of Sydenham. A culvert had been weakened by floors, and, just as the locomotive was going over it, the engineer and fireman felt it giving way. A second later the cars dropped a distance of twenty feet and piled up. Eight of the cars were empty and one was laden with newsprint. The cars were badly smashed and the paper was strewn about. None of the train crew was injured.

A wrecking crew arrived early in the afternoon, and it was expected that some time tonight (Sunday) the track would be cleared for trains to pass. Traffic was in the meantime diverted. The culvert will be replaced by one of concrete, so as to better withstand floods in the future.

The tracks are close Sydenham Lake.

Fatal Bayside wreck.

Belleville, Jan. 20.—Owing to a washout at a small wooden bridge one and one-half miles west of Bayside Station, midway between Trenton and Bellville, Saturday, Roy Poste, aged 36, Trenton, engineer on the Canadian National Railways, lost his life when his engine overturned and the tender and several cars piled in on top. The fireman, Bert Newson, jumped clear of the wreck and received but minor injuries.

John Pelkey, aged 31 years, brakeman, and a resident of Trenton, died at his home today from burns received from steam of the engine.

Pelky was the head-end brakeman, and was riding on the engine when the wreck occurred. He jumped, but did not clear the wreckage and received terrible burns about the body, face and arms. He leaves a wife and two small children.

Post was extricated from the wreckage about four hours after the accident.

An inquest was opened under Dr. Crowe, Coroner and after preliminary evidence was taken, it was adjourned for one week. The engineer leaves a widow and 5-year-old daughter.

The way freight left Trenton Saturday morning at 5 o'clock and was proceeding about 35 miles per hour when the accident occurred. Both sides of the bank near the wooden bridge were undermined, leaving the track and framework in the air, as it were.


The C.N.R. passenger train No. 8, due in Belleville at 2.12 a.m. Saturday was forced to return to this city, due to a washout at Sydenham, north of Kingston. The train was routed over the north line of the C.N.R.

The north C.N.R. line to Peterboro was completely under water near Hoard's Station, and engine-drivers had a hard time getting through without losing the fires in their locomotives.  .. 

Big Creek rampant

Tillsonburg, Jan. 20.—Flood waters roaring down Big Creek, carrying with them hundreds of tons of ice and debris, have caused local damages here to the plants of the Canadian Milk Products, Limited, and International Cooperage Company and municipally owned property to the extent of $15,000 to $20,000. Torrential rains caused the creek to rise to some sixteen feet, and early Saturday morning the main dam broke away, carrying the lower dam away, and allowing the huge body of water to follow the valley to the above plants, where the heavy doors were snapped off like kindling wood.

The water was so high that it ran right through open boxcars on the track and swept away hundreds of milk cans. The water rushed across No. 3 Highway and joined the Otter River, ordinarily 40 feet in width, and which by 11 o'clock Saturday morning was over 200 feet wide, with all fences submerged along the highway.  .. 

Canadian National statement

Damage caused by floor conditions has been almost completely repaired in the Central Region of the Canadian National Railways, according to a statement issued last night by A. E. Warren, General Manager of that area. The statement reads:

Following hours of intensive effort by the officials and men of the Belleville Division, the damage brought about through floor conditions following the days of unprecedented heavy rain for this time of the year have practically been repaired.

Normal traffic conditions are again reported upon the Lakefield and three other subdivisions effected, with train service once more restored between Port Hope and Campbellford. Work is still under way on the Deseronto subdivision, but latest reports stated that this will be completed Monday afternoon. This is the only subdivision at present affected by the recent floods.

Such track damage as was done on the Bala Subdivision of the Capreol Division by the overflowing of the Don River has also been repaired, and normal traffic conditions restored.

I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of the company to give due recognition to the splendid spirit and loyalty shown by the men of the Belleville and Capreol Division in their effort to repair the roadbeds. Faced by the numerous obstacles, they unhesitatingly and cheerfully labored day and right, and to them must go the credit for the remarkably fine showing made in the re-establishment of traffic upon the lines affected.

Railways: C.N.Rys., L. & Pt.S.Ry.