Omaha, NE Roller Coaster Car Plunges Off Track, July 1930
COASTER TRAIN LEAVES TRACK, 4 ARE KILLED.
TWENTY OTHERS WERE INJURED IN ACCIDENT WHICH OCCURRED AT OMAHA PARK LAST NIGHT.
CARS CRUMPLE IN FRAMEWORK -- ACCIDENT OCCURRED AS THE FOUR CARS APPROACHED THE TOP OF A STEEP INCLINE.
Omaha, Neb., July 25 -- (UP) -- Authorities today examined the testle of a Roller Coaster train which plunged from its tracks here last night carrying four persons to their deaths and injuring 20 others.
RUTH FARRELL, 14, daughter of an Omaha contractor; C. H. STOUT, 50, salesman, and TONY POLITKA, 23, died soon after the accident, and the remaining score may spend many days in hospitals recovering from injuries which left most of them unconscious for hours.
The cars hurtled from the Coaster tracks half was up a sharp ascent, and crumpled in the framework of supports below.
Seventeen of the 20 injured were unconscious when taken to hospitals.
Four cars of the pleasure seekers had been joined together. As the train slowly approached the top of the steep incline, a crowd gathered to watch the breath taking dip.
Cries of excitement suddenly were turned to screams of fright as the rails apparently gave way. The crack of the splintering guard railing was followed by the crash of the cars to earth. A moment of awed silence followed then panic reigned among the crowd of witnesses.
"I heard someone shout 'they're falling," BEN MEISTERS, one of the witnesses said. "As I looked up, the cars seemed to balance for a moment on the edge of the track, then plunged to the supporting trestles below."
"In the instant before the drop to earth, several women tried to jump from the cars. One or two seemed to have gotten out but fell just ahead of the crashing coaches. I think they were hurt badly or killed. Ambulances took them away."
Emergency physicians, called to the scene, were forced to fight their way through the crowds of terrified onlookers. First aid treatment was given a few of the injured, but most of them were hurried to hospitals.
A car bolt, loosened by vibration, was blamed by inspectors today for the wreck of the Roller Coaster which crashed through the guard rails here last night, killing four picnickers and injuring a score of their companions.
A bolt slipped from the first car of the four-car train, a brake shoe dropped, and as a result the miniature train plunged through the side rails, falling 35 feet to the ground with its terrified passengers.
The park is owned by M. F. COSTELLO, A. R. GOETZ and L. F. INGERSOLL, all of St. Joseph, Mo.
Confusion followed the accident.
Action of BEN MEISTER, a city fireman, in turning in a fire alarm as well as a police call, probably saved the situation.
Half a dozen fire companies rolled up to the park in a few moments and soon succeeded in restoring order in the distracted crowd.
Chillicothe Constitution-Tribune Missouri 1930-07-25