DAMMAM — The Saudi Railways Organization (SRO) announced that the conductor, his assistant and other SRO employees in the central control room in Dammam were responsible for the derailment of a Riyadh-bound train.
The June 27 accident occurred on a train traveling along the country’s only passenger rail link. It derailed 70 km east of Riyadh, injuring some 35 people. 332 passengers were on board.
This is the first time in the SRO’s history that the result of an investigation has been publicly disclosed. Although several accidents have occurred on SRO trains in the past, their causes were not announced.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, the SRO blamed the conductor and his assistant for the accident because of their non-adherence to the speed limit.
The train was traveling at a speed of 119 kilometers per hour around a detour, causing the engine and three carriages to derail. The speed limit at the detour was 30 kilometers an hour. It is expected that the SRO will terminate the services of the staff involved. All of them had been suspended pending investigations.
Previously, a royal order issued by King Abdullah, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, relieved Abdul Aziz Al-Huqail from his position as president of SRO. — SG