Saturday, March 13, 2010

The end of Z 102

Z 102 was a second series Z class tram built by Comeng in 1978-79 and issued for service on 2nd January 1979.

Now I am trying to recall what I was doing, but I think in either 1981 or 1982 when I was living in Dennis Street, Northcote I was at home. I recall hearing the fire engine and looking out from my house seeing smoke and thinking it was about the site of the Northcote RSL. Bruce Ruxton was the outspoken (arguably racist) leader of the RSL and Northcote was his club so I thought maybe someone has firebombed the RSL. Grabbing my trusty Mamyia SLR I popped around to High Street .

Tram Z102 Fire2_0001 At least one fire engine (an International Pump Escape) was at work and as you can see the tram was well alight.

Tram Z102 Fire2_0002

According to the tram driver the fire started at the rear of the tram in a seat. as it was smouldering they decided to head on to the Northcote Fire Station to get them to put it out. The trams didn't have fire extinguishers at that time so they had not means to put any fire out. But as you can see things developed! I wonder if in continuing the journey they fanned the fire. Anyway they abandoned Tram near the Northcote RSL. Tram Z102 Fire2_0006

Tram Z102 Fire2_0008

According to VicSig Z102 was scrapped following the fire. Nobody was hurt but I imagine the tram crew would have some explaining. Later that year I noticed fire extinguishers appearing on trams presumably as a result of this event.

1 comment:

Loose Shunter said...

Great set of photos and commentary Iain. Appreciate your documenting this piece of the past (then the present) for the future (today).

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