Driver Arrested In Fatal Spain Train Derailment

The driver of a train that derailed in Spain, killing 78 people and injuring dozens more, was arrested in his hospital room in northwest Spain.

Authorities explained on Friday that they are attempting to determine if reckless driving was responsible for the train wreck, which was the country’s deadliest in more than 40 years.

The driver, Francisco Hose Garzon, is a veteran for the company, having worked as a driver for 30 years, reports The New York Times. But now he is the focus of a criminal investigation. But officials are still waiting for his condition to improve before they speak with him about what happened.

Photographs of Garzon immediately after the train derailment surfaced, showing his face covered in blood being helped by two rescuers. While the driver’s deleted Facebook page suggested he sped often, Renfe, Spain’s rail network, asserted he was a seasoned driver who knew the line well.

Black boxes from the wrecked train were recovered and could explain why it derailed going around a bend as it was on approach to Santiago de Compostela. The train was traveling at twice the speed limit at the time, notes Reuters.

While investigators determine the cause of the train derailment in Spain, identification of the victims has gone on. The death toll has been revised to 78, making the crash one of the worst in Europe’s history.

The train that derailed on Wednesday was traveling roughly 120 miles per hour when it hit the bend, which has a speed limit of about 50-55 mph. Investigators are trying to determine why the train was going so fast and what kept its governing sensors from keeping it within acceptable speed limits.

In the aftermath of the train derailment, residents recalled seeing bodies strewn out next to the tracks. Ricardo Martinez, a baker from the nearby city, recalled. “We heard a massive noise and we went down the tracks. I helped get a few injured and bodies out of the train. I went into one of the cars but I’d rather not tell you what I saw there.”

The Spain train derailment turned a festival in Santiago de Compostela from a time of joy into a time of mourning. It is unclear what charges the driver could face if found responsible for the fatal incident.