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Accident is no reflection on Spain's bullet train, railway says

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Madrid, Jul 31 (EFE).- Spanish state railway Renfe is working to spread the word internationally that the train involved in last week's deadly derailment was not one of its AVE bullet trains.

The train that went off the rails on July 24 near the northwestern city of Santiago de Compostela, leaving 79 people dead and 150 injured, was an Alvia 730 en route from Madrid to the Atlantic coast city of Ferrol.

Renfe has enlisted Spain's diplomatic missions and trade offices to convey the message that the disaster does not reflect any problems with the AVE trains or infrastructure, company chief Julio Gomez-Pomar said Wednesday in an interview with Efe.

Along the same lines, he said, Development Minister Ana Pastor, who oversees Spain's railways, met with the members of the Spanish consortium that plans to bid on the contract to create Brazil's first bullet-train system.

Representatives of Renfe and its partners in the consortium will soon visit Brazil and other countries where Spain hopes to market its AVE technology to personally brief foreign decision-makers on the derailment, Gomez-Pomar said.

Aspirants to build the high-speed rail service connecting Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro are required to provide data on safety

"All bidders must submit a document stating that they have not participated in a high-speed train project which has recorded a fatal accident in the past five years, which resulted from faulty operation of the train system," the tender states.

The head of Brazil's state planning and logistics company, Bernardo Figueiredo, told reporters that if Renfe's explanations are correct, the July 24 accident would not disqualify the Spanish consortium from bidding on the project.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/agencia-efe/130731/accident-no-reflection-spains-bullet-train-railway-says