The Blind Engine is the thirteenth episode of the eighth season .
One morning Thomas puffed into Knapford Yard to refill his coal bunker, when he saw a tank engine shunting near by that he had never seen before. The tank engine had olive green paintwork, and instead of a coal bunker like himself, the visitor had coal all over the top of its boiler. To make the engine look more queer, its eyes were shut. “Open your eyes you silly engine!” teased Thomas. “I can’t,” replied the engine. “I’m blind.” Thomas didn’t know what this meant, and he did want to ask, but he didn’t have time. That night at the sheds he asked Toby about it. “Blind basically means that an engine or person can’t see at all.” “Then how can it work?” asked Percy. “By using its other senses like hearing and touch,” said Toby kindly. The two engines grinned at each other. They had naughty ideas to play tricks on the new engine.
The next morning Thomas came into the yard to refill with water. He spotted the visitor under the coal hopper. Thomas decided to puff slowly along the track and blew his whistle as he got closer to the hopper. “Yikes!” exclaimed the engine, shooting forward. Thomas puffed quickly away. When the workmen arrived they found a pile of coal on the tracks. “What happened?” asked a shunter. “I heard an engine coming this way,” said the engine, still feeling scared. “Whoever it was has gone now. Please help clean up the mess.” “Yes Sir.” That afternoon Percy played a trick too. He puffed silently behind the tank engine, and gave it and the line of trucks a mighty shunt. “Whoo!” shouted the visitor. Percy rushed away. “On! On! On!” laughed the trucks as they crashed through the buffers. Rosie saw this and came alongside the new engine. “Hello. I’m Rosie. Who are you?” “I’m Mia the blind engine. My owner built me at the Steamworks. He wanted to test me out before I got shipped back to where he lives. I bet I’ll get a terrible report.” “Why?” asked Rosie as she helped Mia pull the derailed trucks back onto the rails. “Because if I don’t do a good job, he might not want me anymore.” “I’ll try to find out what’s really happening,” said Rosie as she puffed to the sheds.
When she arrived Thomas and Percy were talking about their pranks and laughing about them very loudly. Rosie heard everything and waited for them to leave to deliver the mail along the branch line. Toby came an hour later. Rosie told him about Thomas and Percy, and all about Mia. “I won’t let them get away with this. Leave to me to deal with them,” said Toby firmly. The next morning Toby punished the two engines. Thomas got sent to work on Rubbish Duty while Percy went to the Quarry, and couldn’t leave until the day had ended. The Fat Controller found out about the change when he saw Rosie with Annie and Clarabel. “Where’s Thomas?” he asked. “He’s in disgrace Sir,” said Annie. “He treated our visitor very badly,” added Clarabel. “Mia?” “Yes Sir,” said the coaches in unison. Before he could ask any more questions, Rosie had to leave with her train. In the yard Mia shunted trucks and saw Thomas collecting rubbish trucks from sidings close by. “It’s only for one day Thomas,” said Stafford kindly. “I know. But whoever told on Percy and me will not get away with this.” Mia knew she had to tell the Fat Controller. She had the chance to do so that night. After he heard everything Mia had to say, he went to see Rosie, who was at the sheds with Toby, who also answered some questions. The Fat Controller spoke to the two tank engines in the morning. “You two shouldn’t be bullying other engines. It’s impolite. For this, you two shall stay in your sheds for a few days. And if you continue to act this way when you come out, I’ll have more punishments awaiting you.” The two tank engines didn’t dare bully anyone when they finally did come out of the sheds a week later. Though they still play tricks, they are never mean when they tease others to a point in which it’s considered bullying. As for Mia, she got a wonderful report sent to her designer and owner, who had her sent back to the Mainland a few days after Thomas and Percy returned to work.