AWVR 777 is an AWVR (Allegheny & West Virginia Railroad) AC4400CW in the 2010 action/thriller movie, Unstoppable. It was a runaway train carrying hazardous chemicals known as Molten Phenol from Fuller Yard towards Stanton, Pennsylvania. Courtesy of the heroic actions of rookie conductor Will Colson and veteran engineer Frank Barnes, the train was stopped before it could cause any more fatalities beyond when it derailed a lash-up and the engineer was killed, shortly before Colson and Barnes began their pursuit.


History of Events[edit | edit source]

Little is known about AWVR 777's history and what it did before the events of Unstoppable. In the film, 777 is on a doubleheader with one of its sister locomotives, AWVR 767, Another AC4400CW. The train consisted of 12 Closed Hopper Cars filled with different types of grain, 8 Tanker Cars filled with Molten Phenol, A Toxic, Flammable Chemical used in the manufacturing of glue and other art supplies, 3 Open Hopper Cars filled with Coal, and 2 Bulkhead Flat Cars carrying large steel pipes. Originally, 777 was supposed to be moved from Track D16 to Track D10 in AWVR's Fuller Yard to make way for the Railroad Safety Campaign Field Trip Train that would arrive later that day. Instead, due to a misaligned switch, 777's Temporary Engineer, Dewey, Jumped out of the cab to run ahead of 777, Throw the switch, and attempt to climb back on. But when Dewey supposedly thought he set the Independent Brake he forgot that without air brakes, Which 777 didn't have at the time due to a disconnected air hose, The brake was useless. 777's Throttle slid back from the Forward Idle position to the full backward position, Notch 8, Full Power. With Nothing or No one to stop it, AWVR 777 Became a Runaway Train. Dewey ran after it to try and climb back on and managed to grab onto one of the handrails but before he could get back on, 777 had pulled him to the point where he lost his footing and fell onto the ballast. Despite Dewey's assumption that 777 would only travel at 10 mph, 777 Quickly Picked Up Speed and was already well over 10 mph in its first minutes under power. Dewey and Gilleece tried to climb back on 777 again by racing to the front of it in a High Rail Truck. 777 must've already been going reasonably fast as Dewey struggled to catch up with it. Gilleece was able to grab one of the handrails but had to abort his attempt to avoid being hit by a signal post that detached the right-side door. AWVR 777 caused Chaos all over the AWVR Mainline and across the state of Pennsylvania. The Railroad Safety Campaign Field Trip Train had to divert to a siding in Portville and narrowly avoided colliding with 777. Other trains on the mainline also had to divert into sidings to avoid collisions. Police and Pennsylvania State Troopers had to block off all the Railroad Crossings on the mainline to prevent cars from being hit by 777 because they wouldn't be able hear or see it coming. At one Railroad Crossing in Findlay, 777 struck a horse trailer that was accidentally bumped onto the tracks by a truck. the owners of the horses got them out of the trailer with one of them almost getting hit by 777. A News Cameraman and Reporter Caught 777 Striking the horse trailer on video and was broadcast on The Live Breaking News Report on the Runaway. Another Video was obtained from a surveillance camera that was pointing directly at the tracks. In Keating Summit a plan was launched by AWVR to try and stop 777 by putting 2 SD40-2 Locomotives (7375 & 7346) in front of it to block 777 and slow it down so an AWVR employee (Ryan Scott) can be lowered onto the roof by helicopter and get in to the cab and stop 777. At first, The pair of SD40-2s held their position driving in front of 777. Then the engineer of the SD40-2s, Judd Stewart, Began to push the SD40s against 777 creating a Cascade of sparks and slowing 777 down despite the occasional time when 777 would bump the SD40s away from it, forcing Judd to push them back again. Judd had managed to slow 777 down to under 40 mph where Ryan Scott was lowered onto the roof of 777 by a helicopter but before he could even move 777 had bumped the SD40-2s away from it and when Judd pushed them back into 777, the force of the collision sent him flying backward and into the right front driver window of 767, Knocking him unconscious. AWVR then tried to get Judd to slow 777 down enough to get it off the mainline but this attempt went horribly wrong as 777 pushed the SD40-2s away from it giving them a burst of speed. The SD40-2s entered the siding too fast causing them to fall on their side and explode in a giant fireball, killing Judd Stewart. Instead of following the SD40-2s onto the siding, AWVR 777 somehow jumped the switch, staying on the mainline. Next, 777 encountered AWVR 1206 another SD40-2 that was forced to stay on the mainline as it was directed to a siding too small for its consist and had to go to a rip track instead where they met with 777. 1206 Narrowly Avoided a Head-on Collision with 777. As 777 Raced past 1206, It Crashed Through the last car on their train, a Boxcar, reducing it to nothing but scrap. This along with hitting the horse trailer is what gave AWVR 777 its damage on the right front side of its cab and the right portion of the front handrails. Outside of the small town of Arklow, Police tried shooting the emergency fuel stop button on 777 but this was ineffective because officers were mainly shooting at the fuel tank and if one of them had hit the stop button it wouldn't have worked since it needs to be held down several seconds. AWVR devised another plan to stop 777 by trying to derail it in Arklow but once again their attempt was thwarted by 777 as it destroyed the derailers when it rolled over them since it was too heavy to derail.  After 777 passed them, The crew of 1206, Will Colson and Frank Barnes, detached from their consist and began chasing 777 in reverse in their own attempt to stop AWVR 777. They did catch up to 777 and managed to couple with the runaway at the cost of Will's foot getting crushed in between the couplers when he tried to secure the connection. 1206 then started breaking creating a huge constant shower of sparks. 1206 was able to slow down 777 to under 50 mph but 777 quickly regained speed shortly after as the consist was too heavy and the single SD40-2 was outmatched by the 2 AC4400CWs. As an attempt to help 1206 slow down 777, Frank Barnes went out running on top of 777's consist applying the hand brakes on its freight cars. this allowed 1206 to slow down 777 as slow as 33 mph but shortly after achieving that 1206 lost its cab brakes in a huge flame. AWVR 777 was then quickly approaching The Stanton Curve in The City of Stanton. The Stanton Curve is a sharp elevated curve with a 15 mph speed limit leading everyone to jump to the conclusion that 777 would fly off the tracks once it reached the curve. What's worse, Right next to the curve are giant fuel storage tanks. If 777 derailed, the results would be catastrophic. Frank, who was resting on top of one of the tank cars suggested that Will, who was still in 1206 to use the Independent Brakes as a last resort to slow 777. When 777 entered the curve it had entered with enough speed that it was balancing on one side of its wheels causing it to hit nearby electrical posts, knocking them down and the pipes on one of the bulkhead flat cars to detach and roll off the car falling to the ground below and narrowly missing hitting one of the storage tanks. After hitting the independent brake as hard as he could multiple times, Will Colson managed to get 777 back on all its wheels. After making it through the curve, Frank Barnes tried to continue applying hand brakes to the Freight cars but couldn't go any further as the gap between the bulkhead flat and the tanker cars had stopped him. Ned Oldham, in his Pickup Truck and with his convoy of Police Cars and Fire Trucks which had been following AWVR 777 since the beginning, had pulled up to 1206. Ned Beckoned at Will to hop in the back of his Truck. Will, though still with a broken foot, complied and jumped into the back of Ned's truck. Ned Raced to the front of 777 with the Convoy of emergency vehicles close behind. When Ned reached the Front of 777, Will jumped. He grabbed on to the handrails, his feet dangling below him as he hung onto 777. He found his footing and climbed into the cab of AWVR 777 and applied the brakes and put the throttle to idle, Putting 777's Rampage to an end. Shortly after having stopped the train, a Ceremony was set up to honor Will and Frank and the others who stopped the train and for interviews. The ceremony was held in a suburb in Stanton next to the train tracks where AWVR 777 and 767 and the rest of the Runaway Train was parked, for the press and the public to take pictures of it, admire it, and be able to look at it up close. It is unknown what happened to 777 after Unstoppable, But what almost certainly happened was after the ceremony was finished, Both 777 and 767 were taken to the nearest AWVR shop to be repaired and were then sent back into service and still operate for AWVR to this day.

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • Elephant sounds were mixed with train noises to make 777 sound more menacing, including one sound That was used for the T. Rex in Jurassic Park.
  • During development, 777 was nicknamed "The Beast". Denzel Washington uses the nickname in a behind-the-scenes interview. [1]
  • There are also some problems with the movie's information:
    • It passes three junctions that would have and should have derailed it immediately.
    • It derails a lash-up even though it was traveling on the same track as the lash-up. It is not possible for any train to jump a switch no matter how fast it's going.
    • It almost derails another locomotive as it was going on a siding, one boxcar was on the mainline where 777 was, and 777 hits it and goes unscathed. 777 would've derailed because the track switch was aligned with the siding, and NOT the mainline.
    • AWVR 777 crashed through a boxcar, and the boxcar exploded like it was made of plywood. it was canonically made of steel, so it would not have done that.
    • A few frames before 777 hits the aforementioned boxcar, it is seen with one of the trucks on the ground and not the rail.
    • There is damage to the front of the 777 before it hits the trailer.
    • 777 and 767 travel about 75 MPH, though a single AC4400CW wouldnt be able to do so pulling 39 cars. 767 wouldn't have been used as power since it was a yard move.
  • CP 9782 was the early production version of 777 and CP 9777 was the late production version of 777.
  • The 777 is based on the CSX "Crazy 8s" Runaway, where a CSX SD40-2 numbered 8888 became a runway in the same fashion as in the film.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

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