Three train collisions, three deaths, tens of injuries, hours of delays and millions of crowns on repairs - the last eight days have raised many questions about security on Czech railways. Critics are calling for the resignation of the Minister of Transport.
The latest incident occured en route from Prague to Kolín - supposedly the safest track in the Czech Republic - on Tuesday evening. The train driver died during the collision and 35 people were injured. This particularly busy railway track was closed for some time as firefighters tried to remove both trains from the track. Later in the afternoon, some trains returned to their schedule, although there were still considerable delays in many places around the country and substitute buses were put in place.
The cause of the incident is still being investigated. Minister of Transport Karel Havlíček (ANO) claims that it was not a technical failure but a personal error by the driver. However, David Votroubek, a member of the Presidium of the Federation of Train Drivers, is convinced that it is not possible to draw conclusions so shortly after the incident and that the driver did everything according to the regulations.
July has been tragic for Czech railways - last Tuesday, a head-on collision occured between two trains on the Karlovy Vary - Potůčky line. Two people died and another 24 were injured. The other three incidents were without injuries.