Train braking system had been planned

2013-08-08 22:12
Train driver Francisco Jose Garzon Amo is helped by two men as he is evacuated from the site of a train accident in Santiago de Compostela, Spain. (La Voz de Galicia, Xoan Soler/ AP)

Train driver Francisco Jose Garzon Amo is helped by two men as he is evacuated from the site of a train accident in Santiago de Compostela, Spain. (La Voz de Galicia, Xoan Soler/ AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Madrid - The section of the track where a train derailed in Spain, killing 79 people, was initially due to be fitted with a security system that automatically slows speeding trains, the head of Spain's track operator said on Thursday.

However, the plan was later scrapped because of the type of track at that spot, Gonzalo Ferre, the head of state railway track operator Adif told a parliamentary panel about the 24 July crash.

The system that automatically brakes speeding trains is only used on high-speed tracks, but the section where the accident happened was a conventional track, he said.

Therefore, it was fitted with another security system that stops the train only if it is travelling at over 200km/h, Ferre said.

The train was hurtling around a bend at 179km/h, more than twice the speed limit, when it leapt off the tracks, a court in Santiago de Compostela which is investigating the crash said last week after analysing the train's data recording "black boxes".

The driver, 52-year-old Francisco Jose Garzon Amo, has been provisionally charged with 79 counts of reckless homicide. He has been released under court supervision while an investigation into Spain's deadliest rail accident since 1944 continues.

The president of state train company Renfe, Julio Gomez-Pomar, said the crew had not reported any problems with the train before the crash.

"All security procedures were followed correctly," he added.

"We are committed to finding out what caused the accident and we will continue to improve the safety of the Spanish rail system."

Spain's Minister of Public Works Ana Pastor will appear before the parliamentary panel on Friday to discuss rail safety measures.

Thirty-eight people who were injured in the accident remain in hospital on Thursday, six of them in critical condition, regional health authorities said.

Read more on:    spain  |  spain train crash

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Meet instagram star, Pumpkin the racoon

With 300 000 followers and growing Pumpkin is winning over the internet!



The cats that cost R35 000
Miley Cyrus can’t get enough of her new puppy
13 guilty pets
Meet SA's top poacher-catcher

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts

Plant some seeds. Your innovative mind is on fire and your ingenious ideas may just be the seeds for future projects. You may more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.