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ACCIDENT

Denmark to destroy train involved in fatal Great Belt Bridge crash

A train which crashed on the Great Belt Bridge on January 2nd this year is to be scrapped. Eight people lost their lives in the tragedy.

Denmark to destroy train involved in fatal Great Belt Bridge crash
The train wreckage on the Great Belt Bridge on January 2nd. Photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen / Ritzau Scanpix

The train, which was severely damaged but not irreparable, will be broken up and destroyed, Avisen Danmark reports.

“We have decided that when the Danish Maritime Investigation Board (DMIB) has finalized its report (of the accident), the train will be completely destroyed. It is not going to run again,” Per Schrøder, operations director with national rail company DSB, told Avisen Danmark.

After the January crash, which was the worst rail accident in Denmark for 30 years, the wreckage of the train was taken to a workshop in Aarhus.

Following police and DMIB investigations, it was handed over to DSB’s insurers.

“The train could possibly be repaired, but it was severely damaged,” Schrøder said.

“There are feelings involved… out of respect for the dead, their loved ones and staff, nothing will be reused,” he added, noting that a final decision would, however, be taken by the insurance company.

Similarly to conventions in air travel, the number of the DSB service was changed after its involvement in the tragedy.

The 05:19 departure from Aarhus was previously designated ICL 210, but was relisted as ICL 212 after the accident.

“It was completely natural for me to change the number of the service. We did this out of consideration for passengers and staff who don’t want to make associations with the catastrophe,” Schrøder said.

Initial results from the DMIB investigation point to high winds and insufficient attachment mechanisms as primary causes of the fatal accident, in which the passenger train collided with empty carriages from an oncoming freight train on the box-girder section of the Great Belt Fixed Link.

The final report from DMIB is expected to be published around the end of this year.

READ ALSO: Badly-attached container caused fatal accident on Great Belt Bridge: initial report

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GREAT BELT BRIDGE

Car drivers overcharged for crossing Denmark’s Great Belt Bridge

Drivers of small cars may have overpaid in tolls when crossing the Great Belt Bridge. The bridge's toll operator has urged customers to check billing information.

Car drivers overcharged for crossing Denmark's Great Belt Bridge
Photo: Ida Guldbæk Arentsen/Ritzau Scanpix

Operating company Sund & Bælt has encouraged customers to get in touch if they have paid too much to cross the bridge, which connects Zealand with Funen.

The problem, first reported by Fyens Stiftstidende, stems from number plate recognition or used of the BroBizz payment tag.

Payment equipment has in some cases incorrectly registered the size of some vehicles using these payment forms.

The issue first began occurring in December following the replacement of parts in the toll booths.

“We started in September and were finished close to a week before Christmas, changing the entire motor in the payment machine,” operations manager Palle Nygaard told Fyens.

“So there have clearly been a few teething problems, and one of those is that we not have classified (vehicles) quite as well as usual,” he added.

The exact number of incorrect classifications was unclear, but “a couple of percent each day out of 35,000 ends up being a fair few”, Nygaard said.

The Sund & Bælt operations manager told DR that “particularly, customers with very small cars have been charged a higher price than they are used to”.

A single journey in a private car of up to 3 metres in length should cost a toll of 130 kroner, while the toll for a car of 3-6 metres’ length is 245 kroner.

Customers who think they may have been overcharged can check the invoices or receipts they receive, for example via email for BroBizz users.

These will show the category for which tolls were charged.

“You should contact customer service (for a refund) if you find you have paid a different amount than you are used to,” Nygaard told DR.

“If you pay by card (at the bridge) and see that the price is wrong, you can press ‘help’ and get the problem fixed,” he added.

The company expects to fix the issue during the first quarter of 2020.

READ ALSO: New laws: Here's what changes in Denmark in 2020

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