Home » Greece train crash: Anger boils as audio released of driver being told to ignore red light

Greece train crash: Anger boils as audio released of driver being told to ignore red light

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Anger in Greece over poor railway security grew on Thursday, as authorities launched audio wherein a prepare driver concerned in one of many nation’s worst prepare crashes in recent times was instructed to disregard a crimson gentle.

Demonstrators poured onto the streets after the head-on collision between a passenger prepare carrying greater than 350 folks and a freight prepare on Tuesday night in Tempi, close to the town of Larissa. The loss of life toll from the crash rose to 57 late on Thursday.

Protesters clashed with police within the capital Athens, the nation’s transport minister resigned within the wake of the tragedy and a rail employees’ union is occurring strike, accusing the federal government of “disrespect” within the sector.

One other 48 folks stay in hospital because of the crash, which left toppled carriages and scorched particles in its wake. Six of the injured being handled are in vital situation attributable to head wounds and critical burns, public broadcaster ERT reported Thursday.

After a prepare station supervisor in Larissa was arrested in connection to the collision, Greek authorities on Thursday made public putting dispatch recordings that present one of many prepare drivers receiving directions to disregard a crimson gentle.

“Proceed via crimson site visitors gentle exit till site visitors gentle entry of Neon Poron,” the station grasp is heard saying.

“Vasilis, am I good to go?” the prepare driver responds, to which the prepare grasp says “Go, go.”

In a second dialog, the station grasp may be heard ordering an worker to maintain one of many trains on the identical observe.

“Shall I flip it now?” the worker asks.

“No, no, as a result of 1564 is on this route,” the station grasp says.

The station grasp has been charged with mass deaths via negligence and inflicting grievous bodily hurt via negligence. Upon arrest he blamed the collision on a technical fault, although later admitted to “making a mistake.”

Protesters gathered exterior the central Athens headquarters of Greek rail firm Hellenic Practice once more on Thursday night in an indication organized by scholar and employee unions.

Police already had a presence exterior the Hellenic Practice headquarters earlier than the demonstrators arrived. The protest was peaceable, following unrest on Wednesday wherein demonstrators clashed with police.

Many of the passengers concerned within the accident had been younger, an area hospital instructed ERT. The accident got here quickly after a vacation weekend.

Search and rescue operations will proceed on Thursday and Friday on the website of the crash, in accordance with the Fireplace Service.

In the meantime, kinfolk of these lacking are nonetheless awaiting information concerning their family members because the identification course of continues at Larissa Basic Hospital.

Talking earlier to Greek media, Dimitris Bournazis, who’s making an attempt to get information about his father and brother, stated nobody has given him any data. Bournazis stated he was making an attempt to contact the corporate to search out out the place on the prepare his kinfolk had been sitting on the time of the crash. He stated he known as the places of work of Hellenic Practice 3 times however nobody has known as him again.

“The prime minister and the well being minister got here right here yesterday. Why? To do what? To elucidate what? The place are they at present?” Bournazis instructed Greek broadcaster SKAI, including that “nobody has given us any data, nobody is aware of how many individuals actually had been inside.”

“We can not solely blame one individual for this due to a mistake. The place is everybody else now? All of them await the election to talk,” he stated.

Talking to ERT, passenger Andreas Alikaniotis, who was within the second carriage through the collision, described the moments following the crash.

“What we did was to interrupt the glass, which was already cracked, and to throw the bags exterior the carriage, so we are able to land someplace delicate,” he instructed ERT, describing how he helped round 10 folks escape.

“We jumped 3 to 4 meters,” he added, “first the extra severely injured after which us with lighter accidents”

Alikaniotis added that he remembers pulling up two or three ladies and serving to them get to the window to leap. “There was panic,” he added.

An aerial drone photograph taken on Wednesday shows emergency crews searching wreckage of the accident, which killed dozens and left scores injured.

Greece has a weak file of railway passenger security in contrast with different nations in Europe, recording the best railway fatality charge per million prepare kilometers from 2018 to 2020 amongst 28 nations on the continent, in accordance with a 2022 report from the European Union Company for Railways.

In a rare assembly, the Greek federation of rail employees determined unanimously to launch the 24-hour strike on Thursday to spotlight poor working circumstances and persistent understaffing.

It accused the federal authorities of “disrespect” in the direction of railways for inflicting the crash, saying “extra everlasting employees, higher coaching and primarily the implementation of contemporary safety programs, are completely thrown within the bin.”

Individually, one other 24-hour strike was introduced by Greek metro employees, who stated in a press release: “There aren’t any phrases to explain such tragedy.”

Greek transport minister Kostas Karamanlis stated the railway system the federal government inherited was “lower than twenty first century requirements” as he stepped down from his position Wednesday.

In a televised deal with after visiting the crash website, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis stated the collision was “primarily” due “to tragic human error.”

He stated the transport minister’s resolution to resign was honorable, and added that the heads of Hellenic Railways Group and its subsidiary ERGOSE have additionally submitted their resignations.

Protesters, pictured on Wednesday, clash with riot police on the streets of Athens, after Tuesday's collision killed dozens and left scores injured.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis attributed the crash to

Condolences have poured in from the world over, whereas a three-day interval of mourning is beneath approach in Greece.

Britain’s King Charles stated in a press release that he and his spouse Camilla, Queen Consort, have been “most shocked and profoundly saddened by the information of the dreadful accident.”

French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted: “My ideas exit to the households of the victims of the horrible accident that passed off final evening close to Larissa. France stands alongside the Greeks.”

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