On a char blue Swiss morning, two double-engined electric trains thundered along the tracks in the heart of the Alps. One was the northbound Milan-Berlin express; the other was the southbound Zurich-Milan express. Near Bellinzona in Switzerland the engineer of the southbound train failed to observe signals set against him. Both trains collided.

The impact was terrific; all four engines became total losses; a wooden gaslighted coach on the northbound train caught fire after the gas tank had exploded; only three people escaped death. The total...

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