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MOSCOW, July 20, /ITAR-TASS/. Investigation in the criminal case over the crash of a Moscow metro train continues, a switch malfunction remains the main theory of the metro disaster that claimed 22 people, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said live on central TV broadcaster Rossiya 1 on Sunday.
“For an hour it has been found that malfunction of the switch is one of the main theories. For several hours we have checked hundreds of similar switches to rule out a danger of tragedy to recur,” Sobyanin stated, noting that “Specialists will dot all the i’s and cross all the t’s in the affair and will say finally about the cause of the tragedy.” He also noted that the decision had already been taken to check all technical, engineering services in the metro as well as effectiveness of metro fund spending.
The mayor noted that more than one thousand metro cars had been replaced in the Moscow underground for the last few years, ventilation and power supply equipment had been refurbished, hundreds of kilometres of rails had been laid. “But this tragedy has crossed off everything that we are doing,” Sobyanin said, adding that several reshuffles would be made in a few days.
The mayor noted the work of the metro train driver. People staying in that ill-fortuned metro train said that he managed to push the brakes that meant that “he succeeded to react and saved tens of lives.” Sobyanin instructed his deputies and metro chief Ivan Besedin to care for the wounded metro engine driver, who is being treated at the first city hospital. The mayor also asked to care for other injured people, ask them what they need and meet all their needs. Meanwhile, he instructed to make a list of names of all people who were involved in elimination of the aftermath of the metro train crash “to thank and commend them at the city level.”
A total of 117 people are staying in hospitals, including ten persons in a grave condition, the press office of the Moscow government’s health department said on Sunday.
“There were 14 people staying in hospitals in a grave condition yesterday after the metro crash but today only ten patients in a grave condition have remained. The health condition of four people has improved and they have been transferred to the category of patients with their health condition being of medium gravity or satisfactory,” the Moscow health department said.
“As before, five hospitalized persons are staying in an extremely grave condition.”
A total of 21 persons injured in the subway train crash have been discharged from hospitals by now.
A major accident occurred in Moscow’s subway on July 15. Three train cars derailed in the tunnel between the Park Pobedy and Slavyanskiy Bulvar station in the morning rush hour, killing 22 and injuring about 200 people.
After the accident, the traffic on the line that links the city’s downtown with the western Krylatskoye, Strogino and Mitino districts was suspended. A part of the passengers managed to get out on their own and get to the stations. However, the doors in one of the cars turned out to be blocked, and rescuers opened them nearly an hour after.
Pictures taken by the eyewitnesses in the tunnel soon after the accident and posted in social networks showed that the derailed cars were heavily deformed