HUALIEN: As the family members mourned the dead at the train crash site that took lives of 51 people, a Taiwan court on Saturday released on bond the manager of a construction site whose truck authorities believe caused the train accident.
CNN reports that the eight-car train was headed to Taitung when it came off the rails in a tunnel just north of Hualien.
"We see people coming off the train and they look shaken and nervous", Chen Tzu-chong, a Tzu Chi team leader on site, told The Associated Press.
The government's disaster response centre said it was the worst rail disaster since a train caught fire in 1948 in suburban Taipei, killing 64 people.
The lightly populated east where the crash happened is popular with tourists, many of whom travel there by train to avoid mountain roads. Numerous almost 500 passengers on board may have been standing because the train was so full.
The 408 train is one of the fastest deployed on Taiwan's network and can reach speeds of 130km/h (80mph).
Grieving relatives, some holding makeshift shrines and weeping openly, held prayers at the crash site on Saturday.
The government has ordered flags flown at half mast for three days in mourning, while the de facto French embassy in Taipei confirmed that one of its citizens had died in the crash.
Rescuers described an appalling scene as they rushed into the tunnel and found the front of the train pulverised into a twisted mesh of metal.
Yu Hsiu-duan, chief prosecutor in eastern Hualien County where the train derailed, said they were seeking an arrest warrant for the truck's owner, who was questioned along with several others.
He could face charges of causing death by negligence and of forging documents and he said he was co-operating with investigators.
"Prosecutors will certainly step up investigation and understanding of the crimes or of other suspects involved in the case", department of prosecutorial affairs director-general Lin Jinn-tsun said.
Numerous passengers would have been traveling for the first day of the four-day Qingming, or Tomb Sweeping Festival - an annual pilgrimage to the gravesites of ancestors. It's estimated authorities have been able to rescue around 100 people from these carriages, which were violently crumpled upon impact.
Many were trapped inside the wreckage for hours and some survivors told how they smashed windows to escape.
The National Fire Service said the dead included the train's young, newly married driver and the assistant driver.
Other images of the scene showed the back of a yellow flatbed truck on its side next to the train. A construction project has been under way near the north end of the tunnel.
Officials said Friday's devastating collision, which killed at least 51 people and injured almost 190, was caused when a parked railway maintenance vehicle slipped down an embankment and onto the tracks.
The death toll is the highest for a train crash in Taiwan in 73 years.