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Train Driver Held In Spain Following Deadly Derailment

Men stand next to the train engine stored in a warehouse in Escravitude, 10 miles from the site of Wednesday's crash.
David Ramos
/
Getty Images
Men stand next to the train engine stored in a warehouse in Escravitude, 10 miles from the site of Wednesday's crash.

Spain's Interior Minister, Jorge Fernandez Diaz, announced Saturday that the driver of a high-speed train that derailed this week, killing at about 80 people near the town Santiago de Compostela, has been detained on suspicion of negligent homicide.

Diaz said Francisco Jose Garzon Amo has been discharged from the hospital and taken to a police station, The Associated Press reports.

Garzon's appearance before a court was expected to provide the first official explanation of what occurred in the crash, the deadliest in decades in Spain. Earlier, Spanish justice officials said Garzon, 52, would likely testify on Saturday.

As we reported after Wednesday's crash, the train appears to have been moving at twice the speed limit as it negotiated a dangerously sharp curve just before the derailment. It's not clear whether the brakes failed or were never used.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Scott Neuman is a reporter and editor, working mainly on breaking news for NPR's digital and radio platforms.