• Sweden edition
 
Crashed train 'may have been speeding'

Crashed train 'may have been speeding'

Published: 13 Sep 2010 12:20 GMT+02:00
Updated: 13 Sep 2010 12:20 GMT+02:00

A 24-year-old woman sustained serious injuries when the train collided with a backhoe on the stretch of track from Norrköping to Linköping. The woman underwent an emergency operation during the night.

A further 17 people suffered minor injuries in the collision, including the 22-year-old backhoe driver who is recovering in hospital and will be moved from intensive care on Monday.

The backhoe was performing track work on the embankment when the vehicle moved too close to the railway tracks.

The rear bucket ripped along the side of the train with the locomotive's momentum spinning the backhoe which collided several times with the sides of the carriages, smashing windows and tearing at the metal façade.

Due to the ongoing maintenance work only one of the railway tracks was open and a speed limit of 70 kilometres/hour had been imposed on the stretch. This limit may have been exceeded, according to new information which came to light on Monday morning.

"The emergency services have informed us that the train had a speed of around 100 kilometres per hour, but the investigation will have to establish if this is true," said police spokesperson Mikael Skoog.

The Swedish Accident Investigation Board (Statens haverikommission - SHK) announced on Monday morning that it had launched an investigation into the accident.

"We have two members of staff at the scene and they are conducting an initial preliminary investigation. They expect to complete their work on Monday. We can not yet say anything about the cause of the accident," said Karin Hellner at SHK to news agency TT.

The Swedish Transport Administration (Trafikverket) is conducting its own investigation into the accident which occurred shortly before 8pm.

The train had 244 people onboard when it collided with the backhoe. The train had departed from Stockholm at 5.40pm and was due to arrive in Malmö shortly after ten.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

13:26 September 13, 2010 by jackx123
High speed train was speeding. LMFAO - only in Sweden.
13:42 September 13, 2010 by Puffin
According to the Swedish press the Police are now denying that the train was speeding and say that they don't know how this rumour started

I any case the reports are that *blackhoe* hit side of the train - which seems to be consistent with the damage in the pictures unless they are claiming that the train jumped off the tracks sideways hitting the vehicle?
14:58 September 13, 2010 by wolverine2k
next you hear.. the train had to divert a bit off track but since it was speeding, it just went straight ahead!
15:20 September 13, 2010 by BrittInSweden
So the blame lies entirely with the train driver for speeding and not the backhoe driver that went too close to the tracks? Even at the required speed limit they would have still been too close to the tracks and caused an accident.
16:48 September 13, 2010 by rba
At the required speed limit the driver might see the backhoe early enough to prevent the impact or decrease the impact speed.
17:04 September 13, 2010 by Puffin
@ rba/

The Local's headlines are out of date - the train was not speeding - this was an unfounded rumour started yesterday but has been withdrawn today - although not in The Local

http://www.svd.se/nyheter/inrikes/polisen-tar-tillbaka-uppgifterna-taget-korde-inte-for-fort_5310859.svd

Interestingly the track-repair company is the same one involved in a fatal collision with an X2000 in the winter when show plough was on the tracks - so perhaps this company needs to look at its safety protocolls
18:02 September 13, 2010 by bbryan29
as an american

wow saftly is always first, its a high speed train, there should NOT HAVE been no train movement at all or no work at all, how can you have both at the same time with a HIGH SPEED TRAIN?

BRYANT BALLEW

BBRYAN28@AOL.COM
22:13 September 13, 2010 by booka
@puffin

yes i heard its the same too, something needsto change.

i heard the 25 year old woman died.
22:28 September 13, 2010 by Tutu
I thank God that it did not happen when I travelled at 16:10 with X2000 from Stocholm. I sympathise with those that are involved.
23:15 September 13, 2010 by asian123
the same company which is involved similar kind of accident last winter. it is not the fault of the train driver. a 22 year old guy is driving the tractor.
05:23 September 14, 2010 by Garry Jones
A terrible thing. Firstly its so sad that someone died.

Is just another case of Swedish work being placed around the worker pay deals? Work during the night = more money. Therefore the Swedish roads and rails are mainly fixed during the day when they are being used. In England a roadworks crew works round the clock, 24 hours a day under floodlight until the work is done. In Sweden its usually daytome Monday - Thursday but not in July when they leave the roads half done for the tourists to use and they go on holiday themselves. In small towns all the coffee houses close at 7 pm. Reason: Swedish dictates a bonus if you work after 7pm. So without known it one has to summise that the work on the train track was not being carried out during the night as that would have cost them more money.

Just last week the film "The Navigators" was on Swedish TV. Its about railway men and safety in England after the government sold off the task. See

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Navigators_%28film%29 - It is actually almost a warning about what just happened in Sweden. When it was all SJ it worked. It really did!

PS

Having lived in Sweden for 22 years I actually understand the Swedish word "grävmaskin" for the vehicle that the train crashed with. May I suggest that the word "backhoe" is dropped from this American text. The word is totally unknown outside of the US and "the local" is now number 2 on google when one seaches for "train crash sweden". Nobody in the UK reading this site has a clue what happened, a backhoe called be a bridge, a level crossing gate, another train, a horse, an elk, anything.
07:37 September 14, 2010 by Englishman_In_Norpan
I concur Garry!

Backhoe reminds one of an unattractive lady of the night somewhere in Alabama.

Incidentally the Oxford and Cambridge dictionaries now include JCB as a noun that describes any digging machine.

For our colonial cousins one should mention JCB is short for Joseph Cyril Bamford , the inventor of the 'backhoe'.

He is quoted on wikipedia as ."...the only non-American in the US construction industry's Hall of fame."
10:04 September 14, 2010 by karex
Garry and Englishman_In_Norpan

I must disagree. A major Swedish manufacturer of construction machinery calls a backhoe what it is: a backhoe for the simple reason that a backhoe is unique in that it is a hybrid of an excavator with a loader. Therefore the statement that the word is totally unknown outside US is incorrect. It is known as the official english term for this product everywhere in the world where this company has operations. This must also not be the only company who manufactures this type of product and calls it by its proper name. JCB is a brand name. Calling a digger a JCB is about tha seame as calling a razor blade a Gillette. You can call it that if you wish, but it doesn't change the fact that a razor blade is a razor blade...
17:48 September 14, 2010 by mikewhite
"backhoe"- must be some kind of gardening tool ??
10:35 September 15, 2010 by Englishman_In_Norpan
Calling a digger a JCB is no different than calling a vacuum cleaner a Hoover a vacuum flask a Thermos,
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