Home News At least eight killed, dozens injured in India train crash

At least eight killed, dozens injured in India train crash

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At least eight people were killed and 50 injured when a freight train collided with a passenger train in eastern India on Monday, officials said.

The incident took place around 9 am when a Kanchenjunga Express train from Tripura to West Bengal was leaving Rangapani station. The passenger train, which is very popular and often packed with passengers, was hit from behind by a commercial train, causing four coaches of the train to derail. Photos taken at the accident site showed that one of the passenger coaches was lifted off the tracks and hit a freight train coach.

The death toll could rise. Local news media, citing police officials, said at least 15 people had died. The victims included the driver and assistant driver of the freight train and a guard on the passenger train.

Railways chairman Jaya Varma Sinha said rescue operations were complete and Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishna was on his way to the scene.

The relatively low number of casualties may be because the rear section of the Kanchenjunga Express, which consisted of freight and escort carriages, took the heaviest hit. The passengers were in carriages further from the point of impact.

While an inquiry has been ordered into the cause of the collision, Ms Sinha said human error such as ignoring railway signals could have been the cause.

The accident once again highlighted the safety issues of India’s railways, which millions of poor people rely on to travel. India’s railway network is one of the largest in the world and is vital to the country’s economy and people’s lives.

The country has invested heavily in rail safety in recent years after a number of fatal accidents. Although the overall number of rail accidents has decreased over the past decade, accidents with large numbers of casualties still occur. Last June, 290 people were killed in a train accident. Two passenger trains collided One of the vehicles hit a stationary freight train running at full speed in Odisha and derailed.

Following the incident, opposition leaders called for the resignation of Railway Minister Vaishnav, who said he was trying to expand a safety system called “Kavach” that is designed to prevent accidents when two trains run on the same track. Ms Sinha said the technology had not yet been deployed on the Kanchenjunga Express route.

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