Courtroom video shows Spanish train crash driver saying he can't explain why he was speeding

  • Article by: BARRY HATTON , Associated Press
  • Updated: August 1, 2013 - 2:25 PM

MADRID — The driver of the train that derailed in northwestern Spain, killing 79 people, has said he was traveling at twice the speed limit when he approached a treacherous turn.

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joe_mnJul. 31, 13 9:20 AM

I suppose it is news? Spanish authorities are looking for employee of Spanish train co. And How does that have any bearing on outcome of accident? You can't change past. Driver was going 95 mph in 50 mph zone. You start braking long before you get to zone. A train does not stop on a dime.

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FrankLJul. 31, 13 9:23 AM

Yesterday they have an inflammatory report insinuating the driver was chatting on the cell phone, now we find out he was getting instructions from the office over the official phone.

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FrankLJul. 31, 13 9:42 AM

joe, why this matters is that reading between the lines it looks like the driver was distracted due to some clerk calling him about paperwork.

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joe_mnJul. 31, 1310:19 AM

oh, i see. should i stop at gate A or gate B? why not STOP at one of them? how totally clueless was this professional driver? only 1 person in cab and his whole job was to start/stop train and he screwed up

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wallyworldmnJul. 31, 1310:47 AM

We all take our lives in our hands on a daily basis. This just happened to be a failure of colossal proportions by the engineer. We trust our lives to these people and expect professional behavior. The captains of cruise ships, pilots of jumbo jets and other operators of mass transit need to do it right every time. Being on the phone doesn't cut it for those that died.

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bigtmnJul. 31, 1312:23 PM

I don't see why operating a train while talking on a cell phone is such a big deal. People do it in their cars all the time. If it wasn't safe wouldn't lawmakers make it illegal? End of satire.

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FrankLJul. 31, 13 3:06 PM

What I don't understand is that it would seem that a train equipped with a GPS system could be programmed to go the correct speed automatically. Similar to an autopilot on a plane.

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turgidJul. 31, 13 8:44 PM

It seems like this was something more than just a distracting phone call. If your own life, as the engineer, depends on you applying brakes 2.5 miles in advance of a curve, and you don't even think about it until the last second, my guess there is drugs involved, or sleep depravation, or something other than just a brief conversation about which platform to pull into.

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