People in the path of the rushing flood waters were often crushed as their homes and other structures were swept away. Thirty-three train engines were pulled into the raging waters, creating more hazards. Some people in Johnstown were able to make it to the top floors of the few tall buildings in town. However, whirlpools brought down many of these taller buildings. A bridge downstream from the town caught much of the debris and then proceeded to catch fire. Some people who had survived by floating on top of debris were burned to death in the fire. Reportedly, one baby survived on the floor of a house as it floated 75 miles from Johnstown.
By 1943, the . Army Corps of Engineers completed the Johnstown Local Flood Protection Program (JLFPP), a series of channel improvements to increase the amount of water the rivers could carry. Designed to protect Johnstown from ever experiencing floods of the level of 1889 and 1936, the JLFPP protected the city from further major flooding until 1977. Although the 1977 flood was brutal within a seven-county disaster area, the JLFPP flood control efforts kept the flood level about 11 feet lower than it would have been without it. Though 80 lives were lost in the 1977 flood, it was far less than it would have been if the waters had risen another 11 feet.
Frick purchased the Westmoreland , a private railroad car , from the Pullman Company in 1910. The car cost nearly $40,000, and featured a kitchen, pantry, dining room, servant's quarters, two staterooms, and a lavatory. Frick frequently used the car for travel between his residences in New York City , Pittsburgh , and Prides Crossing, Massachusetts , as well for trips to places such as Palm Beach, Florida , and Aiken, South Carolina . The car remained in the Frick family until it was scrapped by Helen Clay Frick in 1965. Photographs of family and friends travelling on the Westmoreland form part of the Frick archive, as do the original construction plans and upholstery fabric samples.  
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