Death toll in Spanish train crash rises to 78

The Spanish government is working under the assumption that the crash was an accident, not an act of terror


Alex Halperin
July 25, 2013 2:48PM (UTC)

The casualty toll has risen to 78 dead and more than 130 injured after a devastating train crash in northwest Spain yesterday. According to El Pais newspaper, quoted in Reuters, the train was traveling at more than twice the speed limit on a curve. The news agency described the "Dante-esque" scene:

In what one local official described as a scene from hell, bodies covered in blankets lay next to the overturned carriages as smoke billowed from the wreckage after the disaster.

Firefighters clambered desperately over the twisted metal trying to get survivors out of the windows, while ambulances and fire engines surrounded the scene. Cranes were still pulling out mangled debris on Thursday morning, 12 hours after the crash.

The government said it was working on the assumption the derailment was an accident...

Passenger Ricardo Montesco told Cadena Ser radio station the train approached the curve at high speed, twisted and wagons piled up one on top of the other.

"A lot of people were squashed on the bottom. We tried to squeeze out of the bottom of the wagons to get out and we realized the train was burning. ... I was in the second wagon and there was fire. ... I saw corpses," he said.


Alex Halperin

Alex Halperin is news editor at Salon. You can follow him on Twitter @alexhalperin.

MORE FROM Alex HalperinFOLLOW alexhalperinLIKE Alex Halperin

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Europe Santiago Spain Train Crash




BROWSE SALON.COM
COMPLETELY AD FREE,
FOR THE NEXT HOUR

Read Now, Pay Later - no upfront
registration for 1-Hour Access

Click Here
7-Day Access and Monthly
Subscriptions also available
No tracking or personal data collection
beyond name and email address

•••


Fearless journalism
in your inbox every day

Sign up for our free newsletter

• • •