At least 35 people died and 200 people were injured when a train derailed in Galicia in northwestern Spain on Wednesday, the president of the regional government said.
“The number of dead will not be lower than 35,” Alberto Nunez Feijoo told news radio Cadena Ser.
“There are bodies laying on the railway track. It’s a Dante-esque scene,” he added.
The Renfe railway company earlier said there were “several dead and injured” in the accident near the city of Santiago de Compostela, but could not immediately give a precise toll.
The train, carrying 238 passengers, originated in Madrid and was bound for the northwestern town of Ferrol as the Galicia region was preparing celebrations in honour of its patron saint James.
“It derailed near the station of Santiago de Compostela but we don’t yet know why,” Renfe said.
Public television TVE repeated appeals from area hospitals for blood donations to help the injured.
A witness told radio Cadena that carriages overturned several times in a bend and came to a halt piled up on each other.
Television footage showed that four carriages had overturned and were lying on the tracks, at least one of them ripped apart with smoke billowing from the train.
The accident happened around 9:00pm (1900 GMT) “for unknown reasons”, said a Renfe spokesman.
First pictures showed parts of the locomotive’s roof in flames.
The crash came less than two weeks after a passenger train derailed just south of Paris, killing six people and injuring 30 more.
French rail operator SNCF said that derailment may have been caused by a connecting bar that came loose.
Source: PM News
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