Memorial at the Genthin Train Station

Bahnhofstraße 17, Vorplatz, 39307 Genthin

First, a brief outline of what happened on December 22nd, 1939, the date of the most severe train accident in German history. At about 23:15, the D10 train from Berlin to Cologne left the station followed approximately 30 minutes later by the D180 train from Berlin to Neunkirchen on the Saar. Both trains were filled with workers from ammunitions factories on their way home to celebrate Christmas. The D10 left first but had more stops than the D180, which had only one stop in Potsdam. The D180 quickly gained on the D10. With poor visibility that night, the engineer of the D180 train ran through a warning signal around the village of Kade. The gate-crossing attendant in Kade called his colleague in Genthin to inform him, who in turn tried to stop the D180, using red hand signals. Unfortunately, instead of the D180, which had run the signal, the leading D10 train stopped, resulting in the catastrophe. At around 00:53 not far from the Genthin Train Station, the D180 crashed into the D10 travelling at a speed of more than 100 km/h. At least 186 people died and 106 were injured. The memorial at the Genthin train station was built in 1999, 60 years after the disaster.