March 29, 2023
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Unspeakable tragedy: Pain and sadness with the train derailment in Tempe, Greece: 57 dead, 48 hospitalized

What happened?

Two trains have collided in northern Greece, killing at least 57 people and injuring dozens of others. Here’s what we know about the incident..

A passenger service carrying some 350 people crashed with a freight train shortly after leaving Larissa just before midnight on Tuesday.

he incident happened as the passenger train emerged from a tunnel in the municipality of Tempi.

The first four carriages of the passenger train were derailed, and the first two caught fire and were “almost completely destroyed”, Thessaly regional governor Kostas Agorastos says.


Official update

The search and rescue operation continues. Crane vehicles have lifted the two carriages, the first of the second class, and the restaurant carriage. Firefighters are removing the metal components piecemeal.

There are 57 confirmed dead who have been found from the wreckage of the passenger train that collided with a commercial one late Tuesday night in Tempe.

As reported in an official briefing by the press representative of the Hellenic Police, police officer II, Constantia Dimoglidou, of the injured, 48 remain in hospital. Six people are hospitalized in Intensive Care Units. There are 56 missing people who have been reported to EL.AS and, as Ms. Dimoglidou pointed out, there is the possibility that a passenger on the train may not have been reported as missing by family or friends.

The search and rescue operation continues. Crane vehicles have lifted the two carriages, the first of the second class, and the restaurant carriage. Firefighters are removing the metal components piecemeal. The conditions under which the forces are operating remain difficult, as parts of the train remain amorphous masses due to the intensity of the conflict.

The fire department estimates that the investigation will be completed by noon tomorrow.

DNA identification

The police spokeswoman clarified that all the bodies are identified using the DNA method. So far, 55 samples have been taken from the bodies, 52 samples from relatives of the passengers as well as 26 samples from human organs. The identification has been undertaken by the special forensic laboratories of the Hellenic Police “as a priority in order to complete this painful process”, added Ms. Dimoglidou.

So far, 24 body identifications have been made: 20 by DNA analysis, two by DNA and fingerprint analysis, and two by fingerprint analysis.

Although as a rule the DNA analysis takes several days, efforts are being made to complete the process by Friday, according to a representative of EL.AS. The next of kin and relatives of the victims will be informed by the head of the EL.AS identification team and the specialist police psychologist, and the delivery of the body will proceed.

The first four families of the deceased have been informed of the identification.

Hotels for relatives

Three hotels in Larissa have been allocated for the relatives of victims and injured.

Commission: The authorities must investigate how the accident could have been prevented

It is the responsibility of the national authorities to investigate the circumstances under which the tragic accident in Tempe took place, the European Commission emphasizes.

Asked about this, the representative of the Commission responsible for transport matters, Adalber Jans, replied: “We will not be able to say under what circumstances the accident could have been prevented. This is the task of the investigations that must be carried out now and this is the responsibility of the national authorities. The European Railway Agency is available on request to support national authorities if requested. However, the primary responsibility lies with the national authorities.”
Doyaku New Order – Requests research in every direction

An in-depth investigation in every direction, immediate gathering of all evidence and rapid completion of the investigative work on the tragedy in Tempi, the Prosecutor of the Supreme Court Isidoros Dogiakos ordered the head of the Larisa Appeals Prosecutor’s Office, stressing in his document that now “It is the time of Justice”, in order to identify the culprits, “whoever they are, wherever they belong, wherever they come from, whatever they represent”.

“Your personal and active presence at the site of the unjust loss of so many human lives to gather the evidence that will shed light on the causes of the tragedy is certainly absolutely necessary. These elements must be examined competently, thoroughly and thoroughly”, notes Mr. Dogiakos.

“Judicial judgment should not be trapped in the criminal responsibilities of specific individuals only. On the contrary, a full investigation of the case is required from all sides and the attribution of responsibilities in all directions, in accordance with the essential criminal provisions, the applicable procedural order”.

In his order, the Prosecutor of the Supreme Court concludes with an emotional charge: “The correct administration of justice will be the best and eternal memorial for the souls of the dead.”

Felony prosecution against the station master – On Saturday the apology

The station master of Larissa is now facing serious charges. The criminal prosecution brought against him for his criminal wrongdoings is related to manslaughter by serial negligence and bodily harm with the same criminal classification, while the charge of disturbing the safety of transport against him is the most serious (felony) that he brings based on recent amendment of the Penal Code (article 291) sentences from ten years to life imprisonment.

After being brought to the public prosecutor, he was referred to an investigator and will apologize on Saturday.

In his statements outside the courthouse, the advocate of mayor reported that the 59-year-old faces the charge of disrupting transportation in its felony form.

“On a human level, he’s devastated. He reflects on what happened and cannot bear the burden of responsibility. He took responsibility within the framework that belongs to him. But what counts is to search not the tree but the forest of blame. There is a forest of responsibilities here,” said the station master’s advocate.

“We are taking our share and I believe that the Justice will do its job very well” said the advocate.

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