At least 25 dead and dozens injured in horrific Train crash in southern Italy
By: Tyler West, Xiro Xone News July 12, 2016 Updated: 4:55 PM
At least 25 people died and dozens were injured on Tuesday when two passenger trains collided at high speed in southern Italy, sending debris flying into surrounding olive groves.
Three carriages were ripped apart by the violence of the impact after the two trains hit each other head-on as they travelled down the same stretch of track that links the small towns of Corato and Andria in the region of Puglia.
Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, who was attending the opening of a new science museum in Milan, announced that he would return immediately to Rome and ordered an investigation
Union leaders and railway police blamed the crash on human error, saying the alert system in place on the stretch of track involved in the accident relied on station masters phoning one another to advise of a departing train.
Other systems used in Italy are automatic, and engage if two trains are close by on the same track.
"Surely one of the two trains shouldn't have been there," railway police commander Giancarlo Conticchio said. "And surely there was an error. We need to determine the cause of the error."
Italy Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has promised a full and swift investigation into the train crash.
He said: "Tears and grief for the victims and their families, but also a lot of anger. We demand clarity over what happened in Puglia.
"We will remain at the side of the people of Puglia in this moment of great pain and desperation", he added later in the evening.
Renzi also said Transport Minister Graziano Delrio would report to parliament on Wednesday.
Italian Red Cross workers were shuttling family members to the morgue in Puglia's regional capital Bari on Wednesday to help identify the dead.
The trains involved in the crash were operated by private Bari-based rail company Ferrotramviaria.