Chief Supreme Court prosecutor Isidoros Dogiakos has requested all files related to deadly rail accidents in Greece for the last 15 years.
Dogiakos’ request was in a letter Monday addressed to Panagiotis Terezakis, Hellenic Railways Organization (OSE) interim governor and CEO.
It is part of investigations launched into criminal liabilities and chronic problems that led to the loss of 57 lives and the injury of dozens on February 28 at Tempi, when a passenger and a freight train traveling on the same line collided head-on.
As the Supreme Court prosecutor noted, OSE management is required to inform the highest prosecutorial authority on the fatal accidents of the last 15 years, their location, the number of victims and injured, and what happened to the search for the legal liability of those responsible.
Dogiakos is also reviewing the case file on the railroad accident at Adendro in Thessaloniki (May 2017), which caused 4 deaths and 10 injuries. Only one of the engineers who survived the accident was brought to trial, and he was acquitted.
Railway in Greece has no fire-fighting equipment in tunnels
As investigations continue over the train disaster at Tempi, Skai TV revealed the absence of fire safety equipment in tunnels on the country’s railway network.
Also, in some cases, the ventilation systems do not work, and no pathway has been provided for firefighters to access them.
In other words, in the event of a fire on a train in a tunnel, it is extremely likely that there will be no fire safety equipment there, firefighting vehicles and forces will be unable to reach the site and the smoke extraction systems will not be operational.
Meetings to discuss the restart of rail services in Greece
The Minister of State responsible for Infrastructure & Transport Giorgos Gerapetritis met with railway staff unions once again on Monday to discuss the safe rebooting of Greece’s railway network following the deadly train collision.
The minister and members of the Panhellenic Federation of Railway Workers Unions (POS), who first met on March 9, discussed how to best ensure the safe operation of the country’s railways until the new remote control and signaling system – ETCS, or the European Train Control System – becomes operational at the end of September.
Railway staff included in their proposals recommendations for relaunching railways safely and for reestablishing confidence of employees and passengers in the system. They also included proposals for staff training and technical upgrades.
According to railway union sources, the Athens suburban railway (proastiakos) services will be the first to resume, as it is a network that uses full-scale remote control systems. Freight trains will restart next, followed by passenger trains, it was added.