Train derails in Spain, dozens feared dead

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Associated Press

Posted on July 24, 2013 at 5:25 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 24 at 5:53 PM

MADRID (AP) — A train derailed in northwestern Spain on Wednesday night, toppling passenger cars on their sides and leaving at least one torn open as smoke rose into the air. Dozens were feared dead, with possibly even more injured.

Authorities did not immediately release casualty figures.

But a photographer at the scene said he saw dozens of what appeared to be dead bodies being extracted from the wreck by emergency workers. Spanish National TV showed footage of what appeared to be several bodies covered by blankets alongside the tracks next to the damaged train wagons.

The photographer, Xabier Martinez, told The Associated Press that he also spoke to two injured train passengers who said they felt a strong vibration before the derailing.

The accident occurred on high-speed tracks near the train station in Santiago de Compostola, 95 kilometers (60 miles) south of El Ferrol. Rescue workers were seen in the television images caring for people still inside some of the wagons.

The train, which belongs to the state-owned Renfe company, was headed to El Ferrol from Madrid.

Officials at the Interior Ministry and the Adif rail infrastructure authority did not immediately answer telephone calls or return messages seeking comment. Officials with Renfe also did not immediately return messages seeking comment.

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