Lithuania's TBL, the owner a heavy goods vehicle that was hit by a train in northern Italy, blamed the traffic signals of the level crossing for the collision.
© AP / Scanpix

The Lithuanian company says that the truck was accompanied by three cars and two of these cars had passed through the crossing before the heavy vehicle entered it.

Marius Vencius, head of transport at TBL, says that the truck was already on the tracks when the barriers started coming down.

"The driver pulled up as we reached the level crossing. Two escort cars crossed the crossing and told the driver via the radio to drive on. The truck started moving and as soon as it drove onto the tracks, the STOP signals turned on and the barriers began to come down," Vencius told BNS on Thursday.

"The driver had no choice but to move on, and a blow to the back part of the truck followed five seconds later," he said.

"The version is that the signals of the level crossing malfunctioned. I don't believe that two people who passed through the crossing, our driver and (the driver of) the remaining escort car at the back would have gone through a red signal. That would be simply unbelievable."

According to Vencius, the truck had an oversized load and, therefore, needed the escort.

The transport director said the driver was sober.

"He (the driver) was in hospital and was X-rayed, but he was conscious. Everything was OK. He walked steadily and talked normally," he said.

Two people were killed and 18 injured during the accident in Northern Italy.

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