This Is What Happens When You Steal a Train in Sweden

The Atlantic

Authorities in Sweden are still trying to figure out why a rail-company cleaning lady stole, conducted, and crashed a commuter train into a three-story apartment outside Stockholm Tuesday morning. But we do know how she did it, and it all sounds a little too easy: The woman, "who worked for a company contracted to carry out cleaning for the train operator," somehow managed to get the keys to the empty, four-car train and drove it from a depot at around 3 a.m., reported the AP. The picture above is what happened when she lost control of the train and it derailed a mile into her runaway ride across the suburbs.

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The AP reports that a spokesman for the train company, Arriva, says "it's unclear how she got the keys to the train, but added that driving it is not that complicated." It's not? So anyone with the keys to a major commuter rail car can just take off with a train and slam it into someone's home? That's not exactly comforting to commuters in Sweden — or anywhere, really. "Generally speaking that's possible even if you're not a train driver," the spokesman continued. "You can read about it on the Internet, or observe how others do it." (Indeed, a Google search for "how to drive a Swedish train" results in this train driver's photo-heavy personal blog.)

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The woman driving the train, the AP reports, was the only person hurt. She was arrested on suspicion of endangering the public, which sounds about right.

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