TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Supreme Court on Friday (March 3) confirmed a prison sentence of four years and six months for the driver of the Puyuma Express train involved in a crash that killed 18 and injured 215 in 2018.
The tilting train reached a speed of 141 kilometers per hour near Xinma Station in Suao, Yilan County, where 75 kph was the maximum limit, on Oct. 21, 2018. The excessive speed caused eight train cars to derail, resulting in 18 deaths and more than 200 injured.
The investigation found the driver, Yu Chen-chung (尤振仲), had switched off the automatic train protection (ATP) system, allowing the train to exceed the limit on a dangerous curve. Yilan District Court and later the Taiwan High Court sentenced Yu to four years and six months in jail for negligent homicide, but found two Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) officials not guilty.
Prosecutors filed an appeal against the High Court sentence, but not against the verdict for the two officials, the Liberty Times reported. The final appeal was rejected by the Supreme Court on Friday, confirming the decision of the lower court.