Many dead in Indian train crash

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Monday, July 19, 2010

A train crash in India at around 0200 local time Monday (2030 UTC on Sunday) has killed at least 40 people and injured at least another 100. The crash occurred in the town of Sainthia, which is located in eastern India. Initial reports say that one passenger train collided with another that was waiting at a station, but the exact cause is not known.

The lowest estimate of the death toll is around 40 dead, and Indian media has reported that there are as many as 100 dead and 150 people injured. The incident has prompted a major rescue operation, and senior government officials are en route to the site of the incident.

The region's Superintendent of Police, Humayun Kabir, said that "[c]asualties have taken place. I cannot give any number now. Rescue work has begun." A local railroad official said that "[t]he people who have lost their lives were travelling in unreserved coaches. We do not have their names and any vital information about them to inform their relatives." The state-run Indian railway system has a poor safety record, with several hundred incidents a year taking place, and this crash is the third major one in the past decade.