Media, PA Trolley Car Collision, Jan 1954



Eight passengers were injured, two of them seriously, when a Media-bound Red Arrow trolley rammed the rear of another on the fog-shrouded tracks at Beatty Road stop, just outside of Media, today.
Most seriously hurt was MRS. MARY L. McKINLEY, 43-year-old executive secretary of the Delaware County Branch of the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis, with headquarters in Media. MRS. McKINLEY, widowed mother of three children, was taken to Media Clinic in a Media Fire Co. ambulance where she was treated for a possible fractured skull and eye injury.
Also seriously injured was MRS. IRENE MARIK, 1216 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, who was retained with a head injury.
The others, all of whom suffered lesser injuries - mostly cuts and bruises - were treated at the clinic after being taken there in Media and Nether Providence police cars.
They included EDITH POHLMAN, 27, 144 Plymouth Road, Springfield; CLIFFORD VANDERGRAFT, 4936 Mulberry Street, Philadelphia; MRS. CATHERINE SALMONSEN, and her 3 1/2-year-old daughter, KATHLEEN, of 7743 Parkview Road, Highland Park; ANNA V. McMAHON, 22 E. Cooke Ave., Glenolden, and AUGUST ZEHNER, 57, 1037 Granite St., Philadelphia.

Stopped At Signal.
The crash occurred shortly before 11 a.m. when a Media-bound trolley stopped at the Beatty Road signal box to wait for an out-bound car. Because of the heavy fog, the trolley schedules were disrupted a Philadelphia Suburban Transportation Co. official said, and a second Media-bound car was following the first.
Apparently the motorman of the waiting trolley, DAVID HELM, 65, 8901 West Chester Pike, Kirklyn, was checking by telephone and delayed going into Media even after the outbound car passed him. The second Media bound car, piloted by THOMAS NICHOLS, 63, 900 Clifton Ave., Collingdale, saw the outbound car pass at Pine Ridge and, according to police reports, assumed that the car he was following was well on its way into Media.
Instead, as he pulled into the Beatty Road stop, he spotted the waiting car through the dense fog. He slammed on the brakes, but the car slid forward on the slippery rails and smashed into the rear of the first car.
Most of those hurt, including MRS. McKINLEY were in the rear car.
One of the passengers in the forward car, MRS. FLORENCE CLARK, 27, 109 North Union Ave., Lansdowne, a part-time office worker at the police foundation office, was on her way to work when the crash occurred. She said she heard the second car bearing down and was saved from injury when she grabbed the seat in front of her and held on as she was jolted from her seat.
Chief Ralph Howard of Nether Providence police and Chief Malcolm Laughead of Media police directed the removal of the injured.
MRS. McKINLEY, widow of a former Drexel Hill doctor who died about six years ago, is the mother of a 16-year-old daughter, Ann, a student at Ellis Country School; Buddy, 14, and Gail, 10.

Delaware County Daily Times Chester Pennsylvania 1954-01-20