Spanish officials blamed summer solstice partygoers for crossing the tracks into the path of an express train that killed at least 13, but others said a new underground exit was poorly marked and an old crossing was blocked off, leaving travellers confused. In addition to the dead, at least 14 were injured in the beach resort of Castelldefels, south of Barcelona, shortly before midnight Wednesday as about 700 young people left a train heading for bonfires on a Mediterranean beach.
Most jammed the underpass leading to the beach, but about 30 climbed down from the platform and tried to scurry across the tracks, ending up mangled by a high speed train travelling through the station at Castelldefells near Barcelona.
Authorities said Friday that a team of 12 train security officers assigned for station crowd control arrived at the scene of carnage just five minutes too late to try to prevent the tragedy.
The job they had been assigned was to manage the crowds as they returned home from the beach party, and no extra staff were on hand to guide arriving partiers, said an official with the national rail company RENFE who spoke on condition of anonymity in keeping with policy.