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This article is about the episode. You may be looking for the book or the DVD.

“Oh dear! I never meant to upset her. What if I've upset her so much that she's run away?”

Runaway Engine is the fifth episode of the twenty-first series.


Millie is given extra work around the estate, so the Earl tells Glynn and Stephen of the jobs they have to do, despite their constant chatter. Millie gets agitated when Stephen forgets to clear up garden waste, so she dumps it in front of his shed in the estate. Rather than an apology, Stephen makes fun of her, accidentally hurting her feelings.

By the next day, he tries to apologise to her, but cannot find her, leading him to think that she must have run away. Going out of his way away from the estate to look for Millie, Stephen runs out of water while pulling his passengers and they are stranded.

To Stephen's luck, Millie, with the Earl on board, find him. Millie and the Earl explain that they had gone for a new motor for the estate castle's turntable and that he and Glynn were not listening to his orders yesterday morning. The Earl sorts out the stranded passenger train - soothing an angry passenger - and Millie, Stephen, and Glynn make up again.






  • Going by production order, this is the tenth episode of the twenty-first series.
  • This episode was aired in the UK before The Christmas Coffeepot, so the audience might not have known how Glynn started working at Ulfstead Castle. However, the Full Steam to the Rescue! DVD containing the episode was released a year before.
  • A few references to the seventeenth series episode, The Switch are made, such as when Skarloey asks Millie if she was at the Blue Mountain Quarry to help the narrow gauge engines for the second time.
  • This is the first episode of a few things:
  • This episode marks the only occurrence of a couple things:
    • The only appearance in the twenty-first series of all the vehicles who appear in this episode.
    • The only episode in the twenty-first series in which Thomas does not appear at all.
  • This episode marks the last occurrence of a few things:
    • The last episode (and the fourth overall) to have the same cast in both English dubs, after the seventeenth series episodes, Luke's New Friend and The Switch and the twentieth series episode, Blown Away.
    • The last episode to have Michael Legge as part of the voice cast, and the last episode where he voices Luke. This episode was also his last production before quitting his acting career.
    • The last episode that does not physically feature Thomas until the twenty-third series episode, Heart of Gold, and the last episode to not feature Thomas in any way, as he takes over as narrator from the twenty-second series onwards.
    • Rheneas' last appearance in an episode.
    • Stephen and Luke's last speaking roles.
  • This episode's title was also one of the working titles for Blue Mountain Mystery.
  • During the close-up of Mr. Bubbles, he is holding a blue, yellow and red balloon, which represent Millie, Stephen and Glynn respectively. The blue balloon then flies away, symbolising that Millie had gone missing.
  • A picture of Glynn from The Adventure Begins, a promo picture of Stephen and a picture of Ulfstead Castle from King of the Railway can be seen on the brochure that the Grumpy Passenger is holding.
  • On the Nick Jr. US airing of this episode, it was paired with Confused Coaches.
  • A shortened version of this episode, narrated by Joseph May as Thomas, can be found on the official YouTube channel and formerly on the Nick Jr. US website.


  • In the overhead shot of Millie backing up to the loading shed at the Blue Mountain Quarry, a narrow gauge train is travelling on standard gauge rails and is moving by itself. Steam appears to be emitting from an engine in front of it, but there is no engine there.
  • When Stephen and Glynn discover the garden waste, Stephen's shed doors are shut. But when Millie puffs on the turntable, the doors are open.
  • When the Grumpy Passenger trips on Stephen's buffer beam, Stephen's driving wheel is missing.


In Other Languages

Language Title
Brazilian Portuguese A Locomotiva Fugitiva
Chinese Mandarin 逃跑的火车
Indonesian Kereta Melarikan Diri
Japanese ミリーをさがせ!
Korean 스티븐의 오해
Latin American Spanish Locomotora Fugitiva
Polish Obrażona Lokomotywa
Russian Сбежавший паровозик
Turkish Kaçak Lokomotif

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