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03rd Jun 2023

More than 260 dead after India train crash

Steve Hopkins

It is the worst train crash in India this century

At least 261 people have been killed after a crash involving three trains in India.

A further 650 people are injured after the collision in Odisha state on Friday evening in what is the country’s worst train crash this century, the BBC reported.

Officials said a passenger train derailed and its coaches fell onto the adjacent track where they were struck by an oncoming train.

A freight train was stationary.

The cause of the crash is not yet clear.

Officials said several carriages from the Shalimar-Chennai Coromandel Express derailed at about 19:00 (13:30 GMT) in Balasore district, hit a stationary goods train and several of its coaches ended up on the opposite track.

Another train – the Howrah Superfast Express travelling from Yesvantpur to Howrah – then hit the overturned carriages.

“The force with which the trains collided has resulted in several coaches being crushed and mangled,” Atul Karwal, chief of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) told news agency ANI.

It was the third deadliest crash in the history of Indian railways, he said.

Earlier reports suggested 288 people had died.

India’s South Eastern Railway company said on Saturday that the rescuers have finished recovering people from the wreckage and were now working to restore the site.

India’s worst train disaster was in 1981, when an overcrowded passenger train was blown off the tracks and into a river during a cyclone in Bihar state, killing at least 800 people.

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