RAILROAD ACCIDENT REPORT - SOUTHERN PACIFIC TRANSPORTATION COMPANY FREIGHT TRAIN 2ND BSM MUNITIONS EXPLOSION, BENSON, ARIZONA, MAY 24, 1973

On May 24, 1973, Southern Pacific Transportation Company's freight train 2nd BSM 22, was approaching Benson, Arizona, when 1 of 12 munitions boxcars in the train's consist caught fire. The boxcars were loaded with 500-lb. MK 82 bombs. As the train stopped, the cargo exploded, and the explosions continued for several hours. The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the accident was the exposure of heat-sensitive bombs in Car 38 to a fire inside the car. The fire most likely originated from sparks off the brakeshoes which ignited the sodium nitrate impregnated floorboards.

  • Availability:
  • Supplemental Notes:
    • This report contains Railroad Safety Recommendations R-75-8 through R-75-10.
  • Corporate Authors:

    National Transportation Safety Board

    Office of Surface Transportation Safety
    Washington, DC  USA  20594
  • Publication Date: 1975-2

Media Info

  • Features: Appendices; Figures;
  • Pagination: 40 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00095703
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Transportation Safety Board
  • ISBN: SS-R-24
  • Report/Paper Numbers: NTSB-RAR-75-2
  • Files: NTIS, TRIS
  • Created Date: Jul 15 1976 12:00AM