Driver in F State deadly train crash tests negative for alcohol

web_photo_train crash_05012018

Workers stand next to a wreckage after a train crash near Hennenman in the Free State province, South Africa, January 4, 2018.

JOHANNESBURG – The Railway Safety Regulator (RSR) said on Wednesday preliminary findings into last week’s collision between a train and a truck which killed 19 people showed the truck driver had tested negative for alcohol.

The RSR also said the train was travelling well below the section speed at 78 km per hour at the the time of the accident.

READ: 15 people unaccounted for following Free State train crash

Some 260 passengers, crew and staff were injured when the train carrying 599 people collided with the trailer of an articulated truck between Henneman and Kroonstad in the Free State Province on January 4.

The rail regulator said its preliminary investigation was conducted by RSR investigators who inspected the scene and obtained information about factors which could have contributed to the accident.

It said issues to be further probed included the appropriateness of the line of sight for both the truck and train drivers, the cause of fire to five coaches and the appropriateness of fire mitigation measures.

“An independent board of inquiry into the circumstances that led to this collision is being established in order to obtain detailed information,” the RSR added.