Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

7/31/2013 (8 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Tragedy killed 79 people; driver's license for trains has been suspended for six months

The driver of the Spanish train that derailed and claimed 79 lives was talking on the phone with railway staff at the time of the crash, court officials say. The train was going 95 miles per hour at the time of the derailment, nearly twice the speed limit. The driver, Francisco Jose Garzon, has been charged with 79 counts of homicide and has had his license to drive train suspended for six months.

The driver in the Spanish train derailment, Francisco Jose Garzon, has been charged with 79 counts of homicide and has had his license to drive train suspended for six months.

The driver in the Spanish train derailment, Francisco Jose Garzon, has been charged with 79 counts of homicide and has had his license to drive train suspended for six months.

Article Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

7/31/2013 (8 months ago)

Published in Europe

Keywords: Spain, train derailment, driver, homicide charges, fatalities, phone


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - In addition to the charges of homicide, Garzon faces charges of professional recklessness and an undetermined number of counts of causing injury by professional recklessness. Garzon was also was required to surrender his passport and report to court weekly. Attempts by journalists to contact him have been unsuccessful.

The train was nearing the end of a six-hour trip between Madrid and Ferrol when it derailed last Wednesday as it hurtled around a bend in Santiago de Compostela.


Garzon had received a call on his work phone shortly before the derailment. Garzon was apparently receiving instructions on the way to Ferrol from a Renfe staff member. Background noise suggested he was looking at or shuffling papers, the court said.


Command and control posts in Spain can communicate with drivers at any point during a journey, a spokeswoman from Renfe told CNN. Drivers communicate via radio-telephones known in Spanish as "tren-tierras" or train-to-land. Drivers also use mobile phones if radio-telephones are not working or "when it's considered necessary," the spokeswoman said.


A railroad transportation expert at Ohio's University of Dayton Steve Harrod says he was "stunned" by the report that the driver may have been speaking on the phone shortly before the crash. Harrod says that railroad drivers are not allowed to use cell phones to prevent dangerous distractions in the United States.


According to reports, the Spanish train had passed from a computer-controlled area of the track to a zone that requires the driver to take control of braking and acceleration, Harrod said. 


"It's possible that the driver's phone conversation -- which apparently was part of his official capacity as a driver -- distracted him and he missed the transition from automatic to driver control," Harrod said. 


"He may have been unaware he was in control of the train and realized, 'oh, no, we're headed for a curve.' If that's true, I really don't think it was his fault."


The Renfe spokeswoman told CNN that command and control posts have real-time systems to show each train's precise location at a given time. If this were the case, a controller who would have phoned the train driver might have known the train was approaching a curve.


Of the 79 who died in the ensuing wreck, 63 were from Spain. Others were from the United States, Latin America and Europe. The victims were remembered Monday in a memorial Mass at a Catholic cathedral in Santiago de Compostela.


---


Pope Francis calls for your 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2014
Respect for Women:
That all cultures may respect the rights and dignity of women.
Vocations: That many young people may accept the Lord’s invitation to consecrate their lives to proclaiming the Gospel.



Comments


More Europe

UFO caught on film in England, but it's not a spacecraft... Watch

Image of This mysterious ring lasted for about three minutes in the air before dissipating, according to the eyewitness.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A bizarre black ring is baffling experts in England, after it was filmed by a sixteen year old girl in Warwickshire. The ring apparently hung in the sky for three minutes before dissipating. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Nick Pope, a former adviser to the ... continue reading


Russia continues to devour Ukraine Watch

Image of Russia's Prime Minister, and former president of Russia, Dmitry Medvedev said that Ukraine is on the brink of civil war.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Vladimir Putin has continued his land grab in Ukraine, making it ever more apparent that the Russian president wants to reunite the old Soviet republics and from a new Soviet Union, even at the risk of causing a major war. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Russia ... continue reading


Immune to poison, GIANT rats terrify Great Britain Watch

Image of Nationwide, councils have reported a rise in the number of rats being reported. Birmingham has the highest number of call-outs with 5,100 in the past year.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

"Rats -- the size of cats" is a lyric in David Bowie's classic rock hymn "Diamond Dogs." It's a terrifying, dystopian vision that unfortunately coming true in Great Britain today, with rodents as large as two feet in length. Even worse, these monster rats have ... continue reading


Pope appoints Lady Margaret Scotford Archer to head Pontifical Academy Watch

Image of Lady Margaret Scotford Archer was born in Grenoside, U.K., and holds a Ph.D. from the University of London. She is currently a professor at l'Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland. She previously taught for many years at the University of Warwick in Great Britain.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Lady Margaret Scotford Archer has been appointed by Pope Francis to be President of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences." The group consists of scholars dedicated to studying issues in the social sciences in order to offer reflection and advice to the ... continue reading


Dissenting Priest Defies Church of England's Teaching on Marriage, 'Marries' his Homosexual Paramour Watch

Image of An Anglican priest has defied the Church of England's insistence that marriage is between one man and one woman by openly dissenting from the Scripture and Christian tradition and wedding his longtime homosexual companion. The 58-year-old Canon Jeremy Pemberton, a divorced hospital chaplain, wed 51-year-old Laurence Cunnington this past weekend.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A practicing homosexual priest has defied the Church of England's ban on homosexual and lesbian clergy marrying by wedding his longtime male homosexual companion. The 58-year-old Canon Jeremy Pemberton, a divorced hospital chaplain, wed his long-term homosexual ... continue reading


Who Am I? Homily of Pope Francis on the Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion Watch

Image of

By Pope Francis

This week begins with the festive procession with olive branches: all the people welcome Jesus. The children, the young people sing, praising Jesus.But this week proceeds into the mystery of Jesus' death and his resurrection. We've heard the Passion of the Lord. ... continue reading


Pope Francis Gives Away New Testaments to the Faithful. Calls Catholics to Love the Bible Watch

Image of Pope Francis loves the Word of God and calls us to do the same

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Last month, at an Angelus prayer, Pope Francis asked the crowd how many of them read the Bible every day. The response was discouraging. He told them, "It is good to have a little Bible that you carry with you in your pocket or in your bag. Always carry a Bible ... continue reading


The Gift of Wisdom: Pope Francis Begins Series of Talks on the Gifts of the Holy Spirit Watch

Image of

By Pope Francis

Today we begin a series of reflections on the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the soul, the lifeblood of the Church and of every Christian: He is God's Love, who makes our hearts his home and enters into communion with us. The Holy Spirit is always ... continue reading


Holy Thursday: Francis to Wash the Feet of the Disabled, Call Us to Christian Discipleship Watch

Image of Francis washes the feet of Jesus, in prison

By Deacon Keith Fournier

The Vatican announced that Pope Francis will celebrate Holy Thursday Mass at Our Lady of Providence Center in Rome. The Center is run by the Father Carlo Gnocchi Foundation and is home to many disabled men and women with neuro-degenerative diseases, along with ... continue reading


More Americans on Medicaid than the entire population of the United Kingdom Watch

Image of The 72.7 Americans on Medicaid in fiscal 2013 also exceeded the populations of Thailand which is set at 67,741,401, France at 66,259,012 and Italy with a population of 61,680,122, according to the population numbers published in the CIA's World Factbook.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The number of Americans enrolled in Medicaid at any given time of fiscal 2013 exceeded the entire population of the United Kingdom, That's the shocking new data as published by the federal government's Medicaid and CHIP Payment Access Commission, or MACPAC. ... continue reading


All Europe News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Isaiah 52:13--53:12
13 Look, my servant will prosper, will grow great, ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 31:2, 6, 12-13, 15-16, 17, 25
2 turn your ear to me, make haste. Be for me a ... Read More

Gospel, John 18:1--19:42
1 After he had said all this, Jesus left with his ... Read More

Reading 2, Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:7-9
14 Since in Jesus, the Son of God, we have the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for April 18th, 2014 Image

St. Apollonius the Apologist
April 18: Martyr whose Apologia, or defense of the faith, is considered ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter