Death toll at 233 in massive Indian train crash

Death toll at 233 in massive Indian train crash

900 injured as passenger train derails in eastern Odisha state

By Anadolu staff

ANKARA (AA) - The death toll hit 233 in a train accident involving three trains in eastern India, with 900 injured, officials said Saturday.

The accident occurred in the Balasore district of Odisha state late Friday and a massive rescue operation was launched, according to officials.

Odisha Chief Secretary Pradeep Jena confirmed the latest casualties figures.

"No of Injured has been about 900," he wrote on Twitter.

Footage from the site showed a large number of rescuers continuing to help passengers trapped on the train Saturday morning.

Indian Railway spokesman Amitabh Sharma told Anadolu late Friday that a passenger train derailed and its cars fell on the opposite track.

“The derailed coaches hit another passenger train, throwing a few coaches of the second train off the track,” he said, adding a freight train was also involved in the accident.

Indian Railway authorities also announced compensation for victims.

India's South Eastern Railway announced the cancellation and diversions of several trains. The state's Information and Public Relations department said in view of the country’s deadliest rail accident, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik ordered a one-day mourning period.

Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw tweeted that rescue teams from Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the air force have been mobilized.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted: “Distressed by the train accident in Odisha. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with the bereaved families. May the injured recover soon.”

India has experienced large train accidents. In 2016, more than 140 passengers were killed after a train derailed in northern Uttar Pradesh state.

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