Thursday, October 31

The Psychic Who Predicted The Wrawby Junction Train Crash

Wrawby Junction Rail Accident 1983
Accident at Wrawby Junction on 9th December 1983
Here's a story I hadn't heard before. Back in 1983 a psychic contacted the British Rail (BR) authorities to say she had a vivid vision of a fatal train cash. She even knew the engine number: 47216. I guess there wasn't much they could really do to prevent such a happening.

On the 13th of December 1983 there was a nasty crash at Wrawby Junction, near Barnetby station in North Lincolnshire, England. According to Wikipedia, "It happened when a freight train collided at low speed with the side of a local passenger train. The first carriage of the passenger train was derailed and turned over onto its side, and one passenger was killed instantly."

So was this the crash foretold by the psychic? At first it appeared not. The number on this particular engine was 47299 and not 47216.

But following the crash, a rail enthusiast Howard Johnston, of Sawtry, Cambridgeshire, recalled phoning Immingham train depot to ask why 47216 had been renumbered and was told by staff that they had been warned of a clairvoyant's predictions and made a special application to British Railways Headquarters in London to change the number.

Newspaper enquiries, checked out his story with BR and confirmed 47299's history - it was previously numbered 47216. So the psychic was proven to be correct.

The prediction was not mentioned at the official inspectorate hearing of the accident. A BR spokesman said: "We regard the whole thing as an amazing coincidence." source.

In 1992 S D Boner, BR Area Fleet Manage, confirmed that, "Renumbering of locomotives occurs quite frequently for many varied reasons, all of which are decided at Headquarters level"

An Accident Summary of the Wrawby Junction crash can be seen in the Railways Archive.

In  Jan 1999  47299 was taken inside and completely cut up. Photo: R.Lushman
It's interesting that in 1898 there was also a fatal train accident at Wrawby Junction when a "a passenger train collided with a derailed goods train" and in today's story from 1983 a "freight (goods) train collided ... with a passenger train ... which was derailed."

Other Train Coincidence Stories:
Coincidence Of The Express Way To Give Birth
The Train Crash Coincidence
Cornish Valley Railway Viaduct

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  1. I sit here shaking my head, in wonder of it all. Remarkable.

  2. Wow, this is really something! They actually took the psychic's prediction as real and changed the number and everything and the crash happened anyway!

  3. Interesting. So they believed the psychic and instead of changing the train schedules, the changed the train number. That's the weirdest thing I've heard today.

  4. It was well known as a Jinx loco. In July 1995 I was driving the loco and had a low speed collision with buffer stops. It ended my 16 years railway career.