Galleries > Chicago Disasters

Historical Chicago disaster birds eye view landscape painting
1977 CTA EL Train Derailment
Oil on Canvas

February 4, 1977. During rush hour on Friday evening, February 4th, 1977, hundreds of passengers were commuting home from work for the weekend. Everything was normal aboard the Lake/Dan Ryan line as it turned the corner at Lake and Wabash. Just after turning the corner, however, the operator failed to stop before bumping into the stopped train in front of it. Since the train was moving slowly, the impact was very slight, but the operator applied full power to the accelerator, causing the rear cars to push the four front cars off the elevated tracks to the crowded sidewalks and intersection below, resulting in 11 dead and 183 injured.