The driver of a truck that was on track apologized for the fatal train disaster in Taiwan on Sunday. He also said that he would cooperate with the authorities in the investigation of the train accident.
“I’m so sorry and I would like to apologize,” Yi Xiang told me to National TV Cameras.
The train with 492 passengers on board collided with a truck north of Hualien City just before a tunnel on Friday and derailed into the tunnel. The disaster killed 51 people and injured more than 200.
On Saturday, the Taiwan Railways Authority released the names of 47 victims, including three foreigners. Children are also among the victims. The other bodies have yet to be identified.
The truck was parked at a construction site above the railway line. The truck’s handbrake may not have been applied properly, causing the vehicle to land on the track. It is investigated whether the driver has not applied the parking brake properly or whether the brakes are mechanically damaged.
Driver outside on bail
Lee, 49, is a National Railways employee who regularly inspects the mountainous East Taiwan Railway for potential landslides and other hazards. He was interrogated at the end of last week and released on bail pending investigation.
Taiwan’s Transport Minister Lin Xia Long tendered his resignation on Sunday. The government did not agree to this request, which wants Lin to stay until the results of the train disaster investigation are known.
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