Three bizarre train accidents happened in Romania in only one month. They all remind the public of the poor condition of the railroads in Romania, where trains barely reach 70-80 km/hour on selected railroad segments.
The train accidents seem now a neverending series.
Train accident on March 13 in Southern Romania – freight and passenger train collision leaving +10 injured
The first accident occurred in Rosiorii de Vede, Southern Romania, on Monday morning, March 13, when a passenger train hit a freight train loaded with Ford cars. Preliminary information revealed that the passenger train was supposed to enter the station on another line. Still, the driver failed to stop at the station entry signal, which was already in the stop position (red colour) and rammed into the last wagon of the freight train, which was moving to the station. Ten people suffered injuries, and some were taken to the hospital. The driver of the passenger train is held in police custody and charged with specific crimes related to safety on railroads.
Train accident on March 17 in Brasov – military train loaded with heavy military equipment derailed
On March 17/18, a military train loaded with heavy equipment derailed at a railroad crossing in Brasov during nighttime. A couple was filming the train when the incident occurred. Apparently, a chain from the freight train was tangled with a piece of the old railroad, derailing the train. At least, this is the version of the authorities. The same ones who tried to hide the accident on March 13 when they told the press there was no impact between the two trains.
Train accident on March 25 in Galati: one dead, four injured
The third and hopefully the last train accident occurring in March 2023 in Romania is the most tragic one, as it left one dead and four injured. According to the official statements, the train driver of the engine conducted maneuvers to form the passenger train to leave the station. At one moment, the driver noticed the engine started to speed up by itself and violently hit the last car of the passenger train.
Unfortunately, a woman, the train conductor, suffered cardiac arrest and couldn’t be brought to life despite undergoing resuscitating maneuvers and being rushed to hospital.
Why do such horrific train accidents occur in Romania?
All three accidents tell everything about the precarious condition of the railroad in Romania. Also, it tells all about the discipline of the railroad, as the first incident occurred because the driver didn’t observe the red lights. And also, it’s all about the maintenance of the railroad and equipment. When parts of the carriages tangle with the railroad and engines go off drivers’ control, it’s all that.
Romania is notorious for its level of corruption, but among its citizens has another ‘fame’: one of the worst countries in terms of road and railways infrastructure. No highway link the country from East to West, as corruption and bad management hindered the construction of highways. Romania is one of the countries famous for road accidents, with a death toll in the top three in Europe. Also, railway transport is one of the worst in the European Union.
All that makes the perfect recipe for disaster on roads or railways. Even so, year after year, politicians promise to offer drivers and commuters thousands of kilometres of railroads and improve rail transport. Of course, they fail to keep their promises for various reasons.
Hopefully, this tragic series will wake the Romanian political class to take drastic decisions and improve the transport and commuting conditions in the country.