Passenger train hits and derails freight train in Romania

Image: Twitter. Libertatea

A railway accident involving a passenger train and a freight train transporting cars in Romania left around 12 people injured, fortunately not severely. The accident occurred on 13 March in the Roșiori train station in Southern Romania. The passenger train appears to have hit the freight train from behind. As a result, two freight wagons derailed, one overturned, and several cars were damaged.

To be more precise, according to the initial information from the Romanian national railway company CFR SA, the passenger train was about to enter the train station in Roșiori. Despite the entrance signal being closed (red traffic light), the passenger train’s driver kept the train moving. Consequently, it hit the last wagon of the freight train, which was already on the line transiting towards the station. Romanian media reported that the authorities used a 125-ton crane to put the two derailed and one overturned wagons back on track.

Ford cars on the freight train

For the record, the passenger train belonged to the national railway company CFR SA, while DB Cargo Romania operated the freight train. Additionally, the impacted freight train was reportedly transporting cars, specifically of the brand Ford. The company’s representatives confirmed this early on in Romanian media. Despite the collision destroying several cars, Ford said that under its policy, “all vehicles in transit were insured”.

Controversy over accident assessment

Thankfully, the impact of this accident was not as severe as the one in Greece a few days ago, which left several people dead and injured. Just like in Greece, Romanian authorities stated that the accident might owe to “human error”, as it appears that the passenger train’s driver crossed a red traffic signal when he should have waited.

However, the initial communication from CFR SA stated that the passenger train had to brake suddenly and forcefully to avoid a collision with the freight train that had already derailed in front of it. CFR added that the sudden braking resulted in passengers getting injured.

In the end, the Romanian Railway Investigation Agency AGIFER clarified that this was not the case and that the passenger train was responsible for the accident, which fortunately had a relatively minimal impact both on passengers and cargo.

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Author: Nikos Papatolios

Nikos Papatolios is editor of, the online magazine for rail freight professionals.

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