Impromptu memorial for Oss rail accident victims cleared away

Flowers left at the scene of a fatal rail accident on Braakstraat in Oss, four children were killed, 20 Sept 2018
Flowers left at the scene of a fatal rail accident on Braakstraat in Oss, four children were killed, 20 Sept 2018Photo: @gemeenteoss / Twitter

The impromptu memorial for the victims of a fatal collision between a train and a Stint electric cargo bike in Oss, was cleared away by the municipality on Thursday - three weeks after the tragic accident. Hundreds of flowers, candles, toys, drawings and poems were left at Oss West station to commemorate the four children killed in the accident.

The accident happened at a railway crossing on Braakstraat on Thursday morning, September 20th. A childminder was taking five children to primary school on a Stint electric cargo bike when they were hit by a train. Four children aged 4, 4, 6 and 8 were killed. The 32-year-old childminder and an 11-year-old girl were seriously hurt. The injured girl and two of the other young victims were sisters. 

That evening Oss residents spontaneously gathered at the scene of the accident, leaving flowers and toys at the nearby station to commemorate the victims. In the three weeks since, many people visited the memorial site, also leaving messages of support. The memorial became so large that the municipality placed tents over it to protect it from the elements, and even had to close the road around it, according to Omroep Brabant.

On Thursday morning municipal workers collected all the items and took it to the municipal yard. The drawings, cards and messages were spread out to dry. "Afterwards they are recorded on photo", Sjaak van der Loop of the municipality of Oss said to Omroep Brabant. The stuffed animals and other toys were also dried up and then stored in boxes. "We want to give the toys and drawings a good destination. We're thinking about the best way to do this, in consultation with the affected families."

The flowers will be composted, after everything is properly sorted out. "We're taking off all the plastic, bows and cards. It's going to be a big job, but that's part of it", Van der Loop said.