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The engineer on train 839 has engines 3836, 5819, 5068, and 5383 in full dynamic on June 8, 1987 as the train enters the first 25mph curve west of Tehachapi. The elevation here is 3,940 feet. In September 1922 the railroad completed a second track from Tehachapi to Cameron. The current segment of double track from Cameron to Mojave was completed in August 1923. For many years this spot was the end of double track. In 1964 double track was extended down the canyon to the siding at Cable. This picture was taken from the old US 466 bridge west of Tehachapi. Today this is just an exit off the freeway. One nice thing about the freeway is that there is much less traffic on this bridge. Disk 46
Train 839 has a few TOFC flats on the rear. The SP Starpacer (Train 375) wrecked here in March 1966. Apparently the engineer had a heart attack during the climb out of Mojave up to Summit. The head brakeman must have been asleep as the train was doing over 80 miles an hour when it hit this 25 mile per hour curve. Moments earlier, the conductor radioed the headend as the caboose went sailing by the highway crossing on the east side of Tehachapi. No response. As the conductor was reaching for the emergency valve the train went into emergency. Surprisingly the lead unit didn't come off the track until the second curve. Then everything just accordioned into it. Only one car and the caboose remained on the rails.