Expatica news

Human error caused train collision

27 April 2007

IZEGEM – A total of 51 people were taken to hospitals in Zuid-West-Vlaanderen after a train accident in Izegem last night. Three people, including a train engineer, are seriously wounded, but in stable condition. The other 48 suffered minor injuries or are in shock. One of the train drivers is also in shock.

The accident was caused by human error, the authorities in Kortrijk now say.

A signal with lights was set up near works being done by rail infrastructure manager Infrabel along the tracks. The detectors that form the link between the rails and the lights had not been placed however. The driver of the empty train was therefore not at fault.

A train heading to Kortrijk from Ostend had just left the station in Izegem when it was “rear-ended” by an empty train heading to Kortrijk from Bruges, says Frederic Petit, a spokesperson for rail infrastructure manager Infrabel.

Train travellers leaving Kortrijk will be brought to Izegem this morning via diesel train because of the damage to the overhead cables. Buses will carry travellers from Izegem to Roeselare and travellers will be able to board shuttles to Bruges and Kortrijk.

The inconvenience on the railway between Kortrijk and Bruges is expected to last about 48 hours.

[Copyright Expatica News 2007]

Subject: Belgian news