11 August 2017

Egypt: Fatal Passenger Train Collision in Egypt

Photo: Aswat Masriya
Train station in Alexandria (file photo).

Two trains have collided in the Egyptian city of Alexandria, killing at least 36 people and injuring over 100. Footage from the crash site showed medics working to clear the injured from several derailed carriages.

Two trains collided outside the coastal city of Alexandria on Friday, killing at least 36 people, Egypt's health ministry said in a statement.

The deadly crash also injured 123 people, the ministry statement said.

The incident reportedly took place near the Khorshid station and involved one train that was en route from the capital Cairo while the other was coming from the city of Port Said.

Images of the crash site broadcast on state television showed that several carriages had derailed as a result of the collision and that one train had partly keeled over.

The footage also showed bodies covered with bed sheets lying near the tracks while medics worked to move the dead and injured to ambulances. Locals also rushed to the tracks to help the crash victims.

Dr. Mohamed Abu Homs, the head of ambulance services in Alexandria's western sector, told the Associated Press that he feared that the number of injured and the death toll could rise further.

Transport ministry officials told state television that the crash could have been caused by a malfunction in one of the trains that caused it to stop on the tracks, but no official reason for the crash has been given.

Egpyt's chief prosecutor, Nabil Sadeq, ordered an urgent investigation into the accident.

Friday's crash was the deadliest train accident in the North African country since a November 2013 crash between a bus and a train that killed 27 people south of Cairo.

Egypt's worst rail disaster took place in 2002 when a train traveling to southern Egypt caught fire, killing over 360 people.

The country's railway system has a poor safety recordthat has been blamed on poor management and badly maintained equipment.

rs/msh (AP, AFP, dpa, Reuters)

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