Compensation to be paid to 2004 train crash victims’ relatives: Constitutional Court
The top court ruled that the right to life, guaranteed by article 17 of the constitition, was violated.
In the verdict published on the Official Gazette on Dec. 5, the court decided applicants should receive non-pecuniary damages amounting to 30,000 Turkish Liras (approximately $5,500). The top court also ruled for the payment of legal fees and counsel fees to the applicants conjointly.
The train accident occurred on July 22, 2004 in Sakarya’s Pamukova district. The high-speed train, called “Yakup Kadri Karaosmanoğlu,” derailed due to “excessive speed” on the Ankara-Istanbul line.
The train passed a turning with approximately 130 km/h instead of 80 km/h, the speed limit, causing the left wheel of the second carriage to go off the rails, making the accident more disastrous.
Thirty-seven people out of 230 passengers had died and 90 were injured.
According to a report on the accident, the accident was caused after the total travel time was reduced to five hours and 15 minutes and due to weak infrastructure systems.
The accident had occurred during the Turkish State Railways’ ongoing privatization process and shortly after the new line opened.
On Jan. 21, 2015, a victim’s two children filed an individual application to the Constitutional Court. The applicants asserted that the criminal procedure prolonged and those responsible did not get punished.