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Julian Bray provides: Opinion, comment, forward thinking speculation on Travel, Cruise & Aviation: conflict zones, terrorist impact, drone (UAV) issues, safety (black boxes, emergencies), airline operations, aviation finance, political implications, and all forms of incident risk. Worked at board level with several airline and aviation groups, including Alitalia, British Island Airways, British Airways, Galileo , British Aerospace, Skyways, former CEO City firm Leadenhall Assoc. Founder CNS City News Service. Director NTN Television News (joint co. with ITV Wales TWW) Debretts People 2017 and in launch edition of PRWeek Black Book.

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Thursday, 25 July 2013

Northern Spain Galicia: Spanish High Speed Train derails. 78 dead, 200 injured,many on a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela

The driver suspected of causing the traincrash in Spain is being held on suspicion of negligent homicide.
 
Saturday: The driver has been discharged from hospital and now is in police custody and will appear in Court tomorrow.

 
Francisco José Garzón Amo, 52, had been arrested on reckless driving charge as his high speed train approached Santiago de Compostela. North West Spain on Wednesday

 
ADVISORY this is security camera raw footage not editied
 Video contains graphic content 
 
 
spain train crash


Julian Bray writes: Was the High Speed Spanish train (a version different from Spains Very High Speed Train)  which has derailed and killed 78, 200 hurt, reportedly travelling at more than 200 klms?  A trackside security camera,  recorded the very moment the train left the track, and video footage now seen, seems to strongly suggest the train was indeed travelling too fast. 



The locomotive or powerhead, left the rails, corkscrews and plunges straight into a series of trackside and overhead metal lattice gantries, shearing off whole sidewall sections, of some of the rolling stock. 

The remainder of the train, still attached, appears on the video to slew and then whiplash across two of the three tracks at high speed confirming earlier reports of excessive speed.  The driver who survived the carnage, has now been detained and is being interviewed by police

There were 247 passengers on board, many of them pilgrims making their way to Santiago de Compostela in the Galicia northern region of Spain. 

 
Pilgrims Way - Route Marker

The speed of 200k is three times the authorised speed limit of 80k for this tunnel and bend section. The train would have just exited a tunnel and should have slowed right down to negotiate the bend in the track (hence the speed restriction) when the derailment happened sending whole carriages 'flying'. 

The train was travelling from Madrid to Ferrol on the Galician coast when it derailed.

Officials in Santiago de Compostela cancelled services and celebrations planned for this Thursday, a feast day, when Catholic pilgrims converge on the city to celebrate a festival venerating St. James, the disciple of Jesus, whose remains are said to rest in a shrine.

The city is the main gathering point for the faithful who make it to the end of the El Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route that has drawn Christians since the Middle Ages. The last part of the pilgrimage has to be completed on foot.

Map showing HIGH SPEED rail sections
of rail network. Crash location
Santiago de Compostela
top left hand corner. Middle of three stations
on that high speed section.
 
Galicia is a Spanish northern region of mountains, lush vegetation and has a climate on a par with Wales! It is the heavy industry centre for Spain and boasts one of the worlds largest inshore fishing fleets.  local agriculture is primitive by modrn standards as farm machinery is unable to work the narrow hilly strip subsistence farms. Lord Nelson captured the Spanish Armada hiding in Vigo Bay and twice briefly held the City and port of Vigo  in the northern part of Spain, most cruise ships revittal here. The port of Vigo is inset on the coast and is to the south of Santiago de Compostela, a renowned and venerated place of pilgrimage.

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Its now been confirmed that the train that derailed near Santiago de Compostella was a Series 730 model, one of the most modern used by Spanish rail company RENFE. The 730 first went into service in June 2012. Earlier reports suggested the earlier RENFE S-130 was involved.
 
The S730 is part of the Alvia service, that is trains running faster than 200km/h. It was built by a consortium of Spanish intercity passenger train maker Talgo and Canadian company Bombardier.
 
A feature of the S730 is that the axle spacing like the earlier model can be modified while the train is running. The spacing on traditional Spanish railways is 1.668m, while the European standard is 1.435m. When Spain started its high-speed train programme, it adopted the European standard for axle spacing. Because the axle spacing can be adjusted on these train while they running, the S730, and the earlier S130 model, can be used on all Spanish rail lines.
The S730 has hybrid propulsion, being equipped with both electrical and diesel power. The train has a top speed of 250km/h in electrical mode, and 180km/h using its diesel engine.

 



Renfe Larga Distancia ordered 90 powerheads from the consortium Talgo-Bombardier Transportation in April 2004 and September 2005. The Renfe S-130 electric powerheads with speeds of up to 250 km/h are fast but not Very High Speed,  the ideal complement to the existing fleet of very high speed passenger trains in Spain. The electric powerhead can operate under two voltages and on two track gauges. With these powerheads, neither locomotives nor bogies need to be changed at the borders of 3 kV DC and 25 kV AC networks or when Iberian (1,668 mm) and standard gauge (1,435 mm) tracks meet.


The powerheads are fitted both with wheel disk brakes and with regenerative and rheostatic brakes. Traction motors and gearboxes are fully suspended in the variable gauge bogies. The new powerheads comply with all standards, such as TSI and TCN, and are fitted with conventional and ETCS train protection systems. To ensure effective servicing and maintenance, the powerheads have remote wire-less diagnostics systems.
 
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 State-owned high speed train train operator Renfe in an early morning statement said that 218 passengers and an unspecified number of staff were on board the eight-carriage train during the Wednesday  8.41 p.m.  crash on a section of track about 2.5 miles (4 kilometres) from Santiago de Compostela that was commissioned and opened just two years ago.  Track operator Adif are  cooperating with a judge who has been appointed to investigate the accident, Renfe confirmed.



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