MADRID, Spain – Commuters sobbed, lit candles and left flowers Friday at Madrid's Atocha (search) station, a normally bustling railway hub turned sadly quiet after the devastating terrorist attacks.
Trains had to roll past two of the bombed-out shells of the four trains hit in the attacks Thursday. The wreckage was still on the track just outside the station.
"I came with a lot of fear," said a tearful Isabel Galan, 32, who traveled from the suburb of Fuenlabrada. "I saw the trains and I burst into tears. I felt so helpless, felt such anger." As she talked, her makeup ran.
A day after 10 bombs killed at least 198 people and wounded more than 1,400 at three stations, Atocha was eerily quiet. Few people spoke. Most read newspapers or listened to radios.
All trains arriving at the terminal had black sashes of mourning stuck to the windows of the drivers' cabins.
RENFE, the state railway company, said rail traffic was down by 30 percent during Friday's morning rush hour.
Four of Atocha's six regional and commuter rail lines were open to traffic and most trains were running as normal. Trains on the route hit by the bombs were redirected to the city's other main terminal at Chamartin in the north of the city.
There were fewer passengers. "We can see people are affected," said RENFE official Jose Martinez, 43. "I don't normally look at the passengers, but today I did."
Many of the trains were half empty entering the terminal, which normally sees tens of thousands of workers, students and shoppers arriving during the morning rush hour.
"I had no choice but to come by train," said Galan, a clothes-shop clerk in downtown Madrid.
Inside and outside the station, people placed candles, flowers and handwritten messages on the ground. Others left small postcards of the Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ.
One message read: "We're with You. Today, they killed me and every Spaniard."
A protest rally was called for noon at the station, one of many to be staged throughout Spain.
RENFE announced free public transport in and around Madrid between 4 p.m. and 11 p.m. to help people attend the demonstrations.
The government has put the militant Basque separatist group ETA (search) at the top of its list of suspects in the bombing, although a shadowy group sent an e-mail to an Arabic newspaper claiming responsibility in the name of Al Qaeda (search). Spain's security forces were not ruling out "any line of investigation," Interior Minister Angel Acebes said.
Throughout Madrid, many people decked their apartment balconies with Spanish flags or white banners, each with black ribbons attached.
Families continued to arrive at hospitals in search of their missing loved ones, hoping they might be among the injured. A total of 367 people remained hospitalized, 45 of them in critical condition, a TV report said.
At a makeshift morgue at a convention center on the city's outskirts, Spanish Red Cross official Miguel Angel Rodriguez explained the grim procedure when people arrive seeking news of missing relatives.
"We don't have a list of the dead. Only the injured. If the name they give us is not among the injured, they are taken into a small room to be with the rest of their family and they are offered the services of a psychiatrist," Rodriguez told the national news agency Efe.
One train was attacked in Atocha, another as it entered the station and two others were bombed at stations just outside Madrid.
Although the train bombed in Atocha had been removed, the tracks were still covered with glass and charred pieces of personal belongings such as gloves, shoes and bags.
The wreckage of the two trains hit at Atocha lay on tracks just outside the station, with the sides and roofs of many carriages blown through. The bombs blasted all fittings, including the seats, from many of the carriages, leaving just the bare twisted and charred metal structure with cables hanging loosely.
Blood stains on the tracks and bloodied clothing could be seen scattered about the ground.
Spain's national papers were filled with gruesome photographs and chilling accounts from survivors and eyewitnesses.
Isabel Pinto at El Pozo station told the El Mundo newspaper that she "saw people escaping from the train asking, 'Have I got eyes?' 'Have I got a face?' 'How am I?' 'Is any of me missing?' They were like zombies."
The newspaper likened the attack, just three days before Spain's general elections, to the Sept. 11 terror strike on the United States, running a cartoon of an airliner flying into a skyscraper-like ballot box.