“We have identified the cause of the accident and the people responsible,” Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw explained to the ANI news agency, but added that it was not “appropriate” to give details before a final investigation report is drawn up, according to what was reproduced by the AFP news agency
Ashwini said that a “change occurred during electronic interlock” caused Friday’s accident near Balasore, in the eastern state of Odisha, a term that refers to a signaling system that allows traffic to be controlled.
“We will find out who did it and how the accident happened after an investigation”he added.
“Human error”, the main hypothesis
The Times of India newspaper, citing a preliminary investigation, said today that “human error” may have caused one of the worst train accidents in the country.
The Coromandal Express, which connected Calcutta with Chennai, it had received the green light to drive on the main track but was diverted by human error onto a track where a freight train was stopped, according to this newspaper.
The passenger convoy collided with this second train at a speed of 130 km/h. Three carriages were left lying on the adjacent track, hitting the rear of a passenger express from Bangalore to Calcutta. This second collision is the one that caused the most damage, notes The Times of India.
Meanwhile, the Indian authorities today revised downward the number of deaths in the rail disaster.
“The death toll is 275, not 288, because it turns out that we have counted some bodies twice”indicated Pradeep Jena, secretary general of this Indian state, near the east coast of the country, published by Europa Press.
Of the deceased, 88 have already been identified and of the 1,175 injured, 793 have already received a medical discharge, he added in statements collected by the Indian chain News18, although it is not ruled out that the number will rise again in the next few hours.