Train Collision: 57 people dead, 56 reported missing to the Police

train collision larissa greece 57 Syria

The death toll from the tragic accident in Tempi has so far reached 57, while the number of missing persons who have been reported to the police is 56,  a Hellenic Police spokesperson said.

48 people are hospitalised, six of them in ICU. At the same time, a woman with serious burns was admitted to the ICU of "Papanikolou", in a special unit.

At the same time, the identification process continues at the Larissa General Hospital. So far, 55 samples have been taken from the bodies, 52 samples from relatives of the passengers, and 26 samples from human organs.

This specific procedure is carried out by the special forensic laboratories of the Hellenic Police as a priority in order to complete this painful process.

24 body identifications have been made and the first four families have been notified.

"Although the DNA process normally takes several days, efforts have been made to complete it by tomorrow. When the identification is completed, the relatives and friends of the victims will be informed by the Head of the Police Identification Team and police psychologists, and the process of receiving the body will proceed," Constantia Dimoglidou of the Hellenic Police.

train collision larissa greece
The site of a crash, where two trains collided, is seen near the city of Larissa, Greece, March 1, 2023. REUTERS/Giannis Floulis.

As mentioned, the conditions under which the rescuers operate remain difficult as pieces of the train have transformed into amorphous masses. It is estimated that the investigation will be completed by tomorrow at noon.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis spoke about the Tempi fatal train disaster in a televised address to the nation on Wednesday evening.

The Premier announced that Minister of State Giorgos Gerapetritis is to immediately become the interim Infrastructure & Transport Minister until the upcoming national elections, following the Wednesday resignation of Infrastructure & Transport Minister Kostas Karamanlis.

Karamanlis "assumed the objective political responsibility, and immediately submitted his resignation," said Mitsotakis, and "so did the heads of the Hellenic Rainways Organisation (OSE) and of OSE's projects branch ErgOSE, he noted.

Karamanlis' stance "honours him," he added, "as everything shows that the accident is mainly due, unfortunately, to tragic human error."

Mitsotakis mentioned that he has already requested that Gerapetritis proceed, as soon as possible, with establishing an independent, cross-party committee of experts that will fully investigate the causes of the accident.

"[This] will also look at the perennial delays in the implementation of railway projects," he added.

Speaking of his visit to the Tempi crash site earlier in the day, Mitsotakis said it was "a scene of a tragedy that will forever be etched in our collective memory.

The prime minister added that "dozens of our fellow citizens -most of them young people- lost their lives there, in a horrible train accident unprecedented in our country."

train collision February 28, 2023. Larissa

The prime minister thanked firefighters and rescuers, ambulance paramedics and police officers, local government authorities, as well as "doctors, health workers, and the psychologists in our hospitals, as they did -and are doing- their best under extremely adverse conditions."

Mitsotakis, who earlier on Wednesday at Larissa General Hospital met with relatives of the victims of the train crash and also of those still missing said that "in their unspeakable pain, with a surplus of dignity, they asked me "why". And they told me "never again". We owe them an honest answer."

The country's judicial system "will do its own work," he said, and "responsibilities will be assigned, while the state will stand by the victims' families."

train collision February 28, 2023. Larissa

"We will mourn our children, our siblings, our friends. We will stay united in this tragedy too. And, then, we will bow our heads and grit our teeth. We will work so that this 'never again' that I heard in Larissa will not remain just empty words."

READ MORE: Train collision in Larissa: The stationmaster is charged with manslaughter - "I take responsibility."

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