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Bad Aibling
Image: picture-alliance/dpa/P. Kneffel

Bad Aibling dispatcher arrested

April 12, 2016

Authorities have arrested a rail dispatcher in Germany after accusing him of allowing a fatal collision to happen because he was distracted by a video game. The crash killed 11 people in February.


Authorities in the southern German city of Rosenheim arrested a 39-year-old signals control officer on Tuesday, whom they accused of negligent homicide for playing games on his mobile phone just before a fatal train crash in February.

They alleged that he attempted to make up for his inattention by sending an emergency message, which the train drivers ultimately did not hear.

Investigators believe that "the accused was distracted." Prosecutors said the man admitted to playing a game on his phone, but denied that that had distracted him.

Two commuter trains collided on a single-track line near Bad Aibling in Bavaria on February 9. The crash left four train drivers and seven passengers dead and more than 80 people injured.

Within a week of the case, the prosecutor in charge of the case had identified human error as the cause.

The dispatcher now faces a heavier penalty than he had shortly after the accident, when authorities had accused him of sending the wrong signal.

mkg/bk (Reuters, AFP, dpa, AP)

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