About 13 people have lost their lives, and approximately 50 others have been injured in a train collision in the Vizianagaram district of Andhra Pradesh, India. The incident unfolded on Sunday when two passenger trains collided.
The collision involved three carriages of a passenger train travelling from Visakhapatnam to Palasa. The initial train had come to a halt on the tracks due to a break in an overhead cable. Subsequently, a second passenger train en route from Visakhapatnam to Rayagada ran into the stationary train from behind.
A rescue operation was initiated swiftly with hundreds of emergency workers, including ambulances and medical professionals rushed to the scene.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered condolences, stating that he is in touch with the railways minister to address the situation. The Prime Minister assured that every possible measure would be taken to assist the affected passengers and their families.
Preliminary investigations have pointed to “human error” as the primary cause of the collision, specifically, the overshooting of a signal by the second train.
Chief Public Relations Officer of East Coast Railway, Biswajit Sahu, confirmed the initial findings. About 33 trains were cancelled, and 22 others were diverted, causing significant disruptions in the region’s rail network.
Andhra Pradesh’s Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy expressed his intention to visit the accident site on Monday and announced financial compensation for the victims and their families.
The Vizianagaram incident follows the Odisha train collision that claimed 292 lives and injured thousands, which led to the arrest of three railway employees by the country’s top detective agency. It was the deadliest railway accident in India in two decades.
The catastrophe casts a grim light on India’s vast and complex railway network, which serves millions of passengers daily but continues to grapple with infrastructure challenges that demand urgent attention.
Despite the challenges and setbacks faced, India is investing millions of dollars to modernise its transportation links and bolster the safety and efficiency of its railway system.
Recent endeavours include the inauguration of a major expressway connecting New Delhi and Mumbai, spanning approximately 1,300 kilometres. The ongoing construction of the Western Dedicated Freight Corridor is another example of the country’s approach to addressing transportation infrastructure.
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