Railway workers detained over Cairo train collision

Ahram Online , Saturday 14 Mar 2020

File Photo: An Egyptian man walks at the main train station in Cairo, Egypt (Photo: AP)

Egypt’s prosecutor-general ordered the detention of four railway supervisors, including a chief technician, for four days pending investigations into the collision of two trains in Cairo’s Rod El-Farag district.

On Thursday, a train coming from Aswan collided into the back of another train travelling from Sohag to Cairo in Rod El-Farag, injuring at least 13 people. 

The collision had led to the temporary suspension of railway movement nationwide due to the inclement weather conditions in the country. 

According to investigations by the prosecution, automatic traffic lights to arrange the movement of trains were suspended due to the bad weather, leading to the use of a paper-based system to allow trains to pass between control towers. 

The driver of the 991 train, en route from Sohag to Cairo, was granted permission to pass from the Imbaba control tower. At the next stop, however, the supervisor of El-Negali control tower failed to provide the train driver with the paper permission to pass, leading the latter to stop later on to receive the permission.

During the stop of the first train, the driver of the second train received a written permission from Imbaba’s control tower, despite the absence of assurances that the first train had arrived to the second control tower, leading to the collision of both trains.

The prosecution said it has ordered the release of the train drivers after investigations showed an absence of error. 

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