Indian train collision death toll nears 300, another 850 injured

BHUBANESWAR, India, SANA – The death toll from the collision of two Indian passenger trains in Odisha state has surged to 288 and more than 850 are injured, a state government official told AFP on Saturday, making the rail accident the country’s deadliest in more than two decades.

Sudhanshu Sarangi, director general of Odisha Fire Services, also said that “rescue work is still going on” and there were “a lot of serious injuries”, according to AFP.

Chief Secretary Pradeep Jena said on Twitter that over 200 ambulances had been called to the scene of Friday’s accident in Odisha’s Balasore district and 100 additional doctors, on top of 80 already there, had been mobilised, Reuters said.

“I was asleep,” an unidentified male survivor told NDTV news. “I was woken up by the noise of the train derailing. Suddenly I saw 10-15 people dead. I managed to come out of the coach, and then I saw a lot of dismembered bodies.”

The collision occurred at about 19:00 local time (1330 GMT) on Friday when the Howrah Superfast Express, running from Bangalore to Howrah, West Bengal, collided with the Coromandel Express, which runs from Kolkata to Chennai.

Mazen Eyon

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