The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, March 06, 1989, Page 2, Image 2

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    lVpW^ 'Ol O’PQf AssodatedPress
JL W f V O JL-^ l£>V ^ l Edited by Diana Johnson
No sabotage caused crash, official says
LONDON - The driver of a pas
senger train that hit another train and
killed five people said Sunday he ran
through a red light before the colli
sion, but there is evidence he tried to
stop, a British Rail official said.
Gordon Pettitt, general manager
of British Rail’s Southern Region,
said investigators found signs of
“severe brake application” by David
Morgan before his train rammed the
other train Saturday.
Morgan was one of 94 people in
jured when his train, traveling from
Littlchampton to London, hit a Lon
don-bound train traveling from Hor
sham. Authorities said the Horsham
train was crossing from the slow track
onto the main line when it was struck
from behind.
Thirty-one victims were hospital
ized Sunday, 10 in serious condition,
Scotland Yard said.
Morgan “has told us that the sig
nal at the end of the platform at Purley
Station was red, yet he went through
it,” Pettitt told a news conference.
“He has not been able to offer any
explanation for that.
“The safety of our signaling sys
tem does obviously depend on drivers
stopping at red lights. It did not
stop,” Pettitt added. “We have a
system of multiple signaling where a
driver gets an indication of a red light
three sections back.
“We have quite a lot of evidence
that a severe brake application was
made prior to the collision and long
before the signal,” Pettitt said.
Pettitt said investigators were
looking for anything that might offer
an explanation for the crash. He said
there was no evidence of sabotage
and that the signaling equipment at
Purley Station, outside London, ap
peared to be working properly.
He was asked whether driver error
was being looked at as the cause of
the accident.
He replied: “It is not uppermost in
my mind at the moment, though it is
obviously a main area of inquiry, as is
the signaling which we have, though
there is no evidence that the signaling
was defective.”
He said the braking system of the
Littlehampton train was being exam
British Rail’s board has accepted
responsibility for the accident, Pcttitt
said, and “any claims will be sympa
thetically dealt with as soon as pos
“It is right that we should say this
to people because I am satisfied there
has been nothing going on externally
such as sabotage which might be
involved in this accident.”
Crews worked through the night to
repair the tracks and remove six
coaches that rolled down a 60-foot
embankment after the crash.
It was the second serious accident
on British Rail in the last three
months. Thirty-five people were
killed in December in a three-train
collision at Clapham in South Lon
don. That crash was blamed on mal
functioning signaling equipment, but
an inquiry is still going on.
Andy Manhart/Dally Nabraakan
Girls attempt suicide
to help little brother
SEOUL, South Korea -A
suicide pact by four girls who
took rat poison so their parents
could lavish everything on their
brother has shocked Koreans and
raised questions about male chau
vinism and the plight of the poor.
The girls, aged 6 to 13, were
found unconscious Feb. 27 after
tfieytook the powon. TKe y6ung
: ‘‘ „ est di&fitfUiicdiarefy, but doctors
said the other three would re
Yang Soon-mi, the eldest
daughter, told police the girls
made the suicide pact because
they wanted to save their parents
money and ensure their 3-year
old brother would have the best
education possible.
The incident has shocked
South Koreans, who have sent
toys, dolls and more than $15,000
worth of donations to the hospital
where the three surviving girls
were taken.
A social organization vowed
to pay the girls’ school expenses
through college, and Kim Ok
sook, the wife of President Roh
Tae-woo, sent a letter asking the
girls “not to lose hope.”
Newspaper editorials blamed
public policies they said do too
little for the poor in a nation ol
growing prosperity.
Education in South Korea is
free up until the end of the sixth
grade, and the oldest daughtei
was due to enter seventh grade.
Educating four daughters would
have been a major expense, espe
cially since most Korean women
have little hope of finding good
jobs in the male-dominated soci
“It’s regrettable and shocking
that the male-first idea was
planted deep inside the minds of
such young $irls,” said Lee Kye
kyung, publisher of the weekly
Women’s News, a leading advo
cate of women’s rights.
“We still live in a society
dominated by men, despite our
economic success,• she said,
“This is a typical case that gives us
a lesson. It may lead to a move
ment against prejudice and restric
tions on women’s rights.”
Opposition politician Kim Dac
jung visited the girls’ parents at the
hospital and said, “I am grief
stricken. I feel a great burden as a
politician, and I will focus on ways
to promote the livelihood of alien
ated people/’
The girls’ father, Yang Tae
bun, 44, is a factory worker who
supports the family cm the equiva
lent of $362 a month. Police said
the family lived in a small two
room apartment
“The deprivation of these chil
dren forced to resort to suicide
contrasts sharply with their afflu
ent peers whose birthdays and
graduation from schoool are often
celebrated at posh hotels by expen
sive feasts, said an editorial in
the Korea Herald.
It said the incident “has turned
into a socially and politically ex
plosive issue.”
Financial donations to the fam
ily included $700 from a grieving
father whose daughter was killed
recently in a traffic accident and
$3.60 from a first-grader.
Editor Curt Wagner Night News Editors Victoria Ayotte
472-1766 Chris Carroll
Managing Editor Jana Hlrt
Assoc. News Editors Las Rood Art Directors John Bruce
Bob Nelson Andy Manhart
Editorial Page Editor Amy Edwards General Manager Dan Shattll
Wire Editor Diana Johnson Production Manager Katherine Pollcky
Copy Desk Editor Chuck Green Advertising Manager Robert Bates
Sports Edito JeffApel Sales Manager David Thiemann
Arts & Entertainment . Circulation Manager Eric Shanks
Editor Mlckl Haller Publications Board
Diversions Editor Joeth Zucco Chairman Tom Macy
Sower Editor Klrstln Swanson 475-9868
Supplements Editor Deanne Nelson Piofessional Adviser Don Walton
Graphics Editor Tim Hartmann 473-7301
Photo Chief Connie Sheehan
The Daily Nebraskan(USPS 144-080) is published by the UNL Publications Board, Ne
braska Union 34,1400 R St., Lincoln, NE, Monday through Friday during the academic
year, weekly during summer sessions.
Readers are encouraged to submit story ide^s and comments to the Daiiy Nebraskan
by phcning 472-1763 between 9 a m. arid 5 p m Monday through Friday. The public also
has access to the Publications Board. For information contact Tom Macy, 475-9868.
Subscription price is $45 for one year
Postmaster- Send address changes to the Daily Nebraskan, Nebraska Union 34,1400
R S' Lincoln NE 68588-0448. Second-class postage paid at Lincoln, NE.
Emergency U.S.S.R. supplies reach Kabul
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan - Soviet
truck convoys carrying emergency
food and fuel reached the Afghan
capital on Saturday, Radio Kabul
The relief convoy had been
stranded at Hairatan, an Afghan vil
lage on the border with the Soviet
Union, after bad weather closed the
250-mile Salang Highway, said the
radio monitored in Islamabad, Paki
It did not say how long the convoy
had been stuck or when the snow hit
the highway, which is Afghanistan’s
key overland link to the Soviet Un
ion. Avalanches periodically shut the
highway, which cuts through the
Hindu Kush mountains.
It was along the Salang Highway
that Moscow moved the remainder of
its troops out of Afghanistan on Feb.
15, after nine years of military inter
In a bid to preempt Afghan rebel
attacks on departing Soviet soldiers,
Soviet and Afghan fighter jets
bombed both sides of the highway in
the last week in January.
As many as 600 civilians died in
the bombing raids, said a publication
distributed by the Jamiat-i-Islami
guerrilla group, which operates ex
tensively along the highway.
Afghan Moslem guerrilla fighters,
called mujahedeen, have besieged
the capital, Kabul, and blocked most
roads into the city since late last year.
The fighters are backed by the United
States, Pakistan, China and several
Arab states.
There are serious food and fuel
shortages in Kabul, caused as much
by an unusually bitter winter as by the
rebel siege.
Arafat will visit Pakistan soon
chairman Yasser Arafat will visit
Pakistan for two days this week, the
Foreign Ministry said Sunday. His
visit is expected to focus on Middle
East peace and laying the foundation
for a Palestinian Embassy.
The Palestine Liberation Organi
zation leader is scheduled to arrive
Wednesday and leave Friday on his
first official trip to an Asian country
since the declaration of a Palestinian
state in November.
Pakistan, a Moslem nation of 107
million, is staunchly anti-Israel and
pro-PLO. Islamabad and several
other Moslem and Arab capitals
immediately recognized the Palestin
ian state as the previous Israeli-occu
pied West Bank of the Jordan River.
Arafat will meet with Prime Min
isier Bena/ir Bhutto, but most of his
itinerary will not be announced in
advance for security reasons, a for
eign office spokesman told reporters.
Arafat is expected to lay the foun
dation stone of a new Palestinian
Embassy in Islamabad and possibly
discuss recognition of a newly
formed interim government of Af
ghanistan headed by Moslem guerril
Report: Icebreaker averts nuclear disaster
MOSCOW — Scientists averted a
meltdown aboard a nuclear-powered
Soviet icebreaker by a matter of
minutes last fall, a newspaper re
Vodny Transport, a newspaper
that covers Soviet shipping, said the
incident occurred Nov. 11 aboard the
Rossiya while it was docked at Mur
mansk, 1,000 miles north of Moscow
in Kola Bay.
It was there for routine changing
of a filter in a reactor, the newspaper
The reactor was shut down, and
cooling water was supposed to be
drained before changing the filter, the
newspaper explained. But a chief
physicist aboard the ship gave incor
rect instructions to an operator who
opened a drainage valve on the ship’s
other reactor, which was in operation,
Vodny Transport said in its Saturday
The main supply of cooling water
was drained off mistakenly. Just 30 or
40 minutes’ worth of backup water
was left in a reservoir before tne reac
tor would have melted down and re
leased radiation, the newspaper said.
Within four minutes, the “situ
ation was liquidated,’’ according to
Dmitri Tarakanov, the newspaper’s
Murmansk correspondent. He did not
provide details of what action was
taken to control the situation.
Radiation could have spread from
the ship to the city of440,000 people,
Tarakanov indicated.
Vodny Transport comes out three
times a week. There was no ex plana
tion for the four-month delay in re
porting the incident
A meltdown, the worst possible
nuclear accident occurs when the
reactor core overheats to such a de
gree that the fuel begins melting, as
occurred at Three Mile Island in
Pennsylvania in 1979.
If the fuel penetrates its protective
housing, radioactive materials are
released into the environment
The Rossiya was launched from
the Baltic Yard in Leningrad in 1983
and went into operation in 1986,
according to Jane’s Fighting Ships. It
is one of five ships in the Arktika
class run by the Soviet Merchant
Marine Ministry.
Two pressurized water reactors
drive the Rossiya’s steam turbines to
generate a total 75,000 horsepower,
according to Jane’s.
On Thursday, the government
daily Izvestia quoted a nuclear power
official as saying there have been no
accidents aboard the Rossiya or four
other nuclear-powered icebreakers.
A. Zhuravkov also said the reactors
on board the ships are a different
design from those at the Chernobyl
nuclear power plant in the Ukraine,
where a reactor exploded and caught
fire April 26,1986, killing at least 31
people and spewing radiation world
“An operator cannot race it to a
critical stale, as happened at the
Chernobyl atomic power station,’’
Zhuravkov told Izvestia.
The article quoted M. Rabkanov,
chief of the Vladivostok port in the
Soviet Far Hast, as saying safety of
nuclear-powered vessels is “very
There was no indication the
people quoted by Izvestia had heard
about the Rossiya incident
Car explosive
injures seven
near barracks
BELFAST, Northern Ireland -- A
bomb hidden in a car exploded out
side a north Belfast military barracks,
injuring four police officers and three
soldiers as they walked nearby, po
lice said Sunday.
The Irish Republican Army, the
mainly Roman Catholic organization
fighting to drive the Briush out of
Northern Ireland, claimed responsi
bility for Saturday night’s blast It
said the bomb contained 500 pounds
of explosives.
Police said the blast damaged
Girdwood military barracks and
nearby houses oft north Belfast’s
Antrim Road.
A joint army and police unit had
just left the barracks to patrol on foot
when the bomb exploded, said a po
lice press officer who declined to be
identified further.
Most seriously injured was a po
lice officer whose leg was broken, he