ALTHOUGH some would suggest that the European Union breeds agencies like fleas breed on a dog from time to time one of these organisations does come up with decent and insightful information concerning the activities of member states.
In this case, the European Railway Agency has heavily criticized the Spanish investigation into the 2013 Santiago de Compostela rail crash which resulted in the death of 81 people and injury to a further 150.
According to this report it appears that the Spanish investigation was not independent as the investigating body included representatives of the train companies themselves who may have had a vested interest in the resulting findings and therefore the ERA concludes that it was flawed.
The main thrust of its findings which have been presented to the European Commission was that the Spanish report focused too much of the blame on the driver of the train who did break rules, but glossed over the possibility of there being any inherent fault with the lay out of the track and the fact that the accident was possible at all.
In addition, they point out that the Spanish report concentrates on the derailment and did not concentrate on reasons behind the subsequent collision and the subsequent fire that broke out.
Criticism has been leveled at the rail company involved, the producers of the original report and the minister responsible by members of the group supporting the families of those who were involved in the crash and although the ERA report has no legal status in Spain, it has encouraged them to demand that a new and independent investigation should take place.
The Spanish Public Works Ministry has rejected the ERA report considering that the Spanish investigation was both fair and sufficiently in depth.