At least 55 killed, 600 injured in three­-train pile­-up in Odisha; govt announces compensation |

At least 55 killed, 600 injured in three­-train pile­-up in Odisha; govt announces compensation |

BHUBANESWAR: At least 55 passengers died and around 600 wounded in a deadly accident involving three trains at Bahanaga Bazar station in Balasore district of Odisha on Friday evening as authorities mounted a massive rescue operation right through the night involving multiple agencies.
Officials said fatalities could mount as many passengers are still trapped in the debris. Officials were tight-lipped about the actual toll. “We don’t know for sure what the toll will look like. Once everyone is out of the debris, we will know how many people died in this tragedy. But the numbers will definitely soar,” said a senior railway official.
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Railway authorities said two bogies of the Sir M Visveswaraya Terminal-Howrah Superfast Express got derailed first near Bahanaga Bazar Station of Kharagpur division of South Eastern Railway, about 140 km from Kharagpur around 7.10 pm.

04:02

Coromandel Express and Yeshwantpur-Howrah trains derail in Odisha’s Balasore, over 300 injured, several dead

Around the same time, Chennai-bound Shalimar-Chennai Coromandel Express (12841) coming from the opposite direction on a parallel track, hit the derailed bogies on its tracks at very high speed.

Under the impact, 12 coaches of Coromandel Express got derailed. Some derailed coaches of the train hit a stationary goods train on a parallel track.
“We anticipate that more than 200 passengers have been trapped in the train. Rescue operation has begun,” said Balasore collector Dattatraya Shinde.

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Coromandel Express derails in Odisha, several injured

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As the rescue teams reached an hour after the accident, locals pulled out the injured from mangled bogies.
50 were thrown out of train through broken windows, coach doors
Such was the impact of the crash that around 50 passengers were thrown out through the broken windows and doors of the coaches. By the time rescue teams reached the accident site, volunteers had pulled out many of the injured from the debris.
Balasore MP and former Union minister Pratap Chandra Sarangi, among the first to reach the site, termed the pileup “an unprecedented tragedy”. “Hundreds are dead and injured. The scale is unimaginable,” he said.

At least 55 killed, 600 injured in three­-train pile­-up in Odisha; govt announces compensation |

02:26

‘Three trains involved’: Odisha Chief Secretary on Coromandel train accident

The railway ministry announced ex gratia of Rs 10 lakh to the next of kin of those who died, Rs 2 lakh to the grievously injured and Rs 50, 000 to those with lesser injuries. Railway minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said he was on his way to the crash site. “My prayers for the speedy recovery of the injured and condolences to the bereaved families. Rescue teams mobilised from Bhubaneswar and Kolkata. NDRF, state government teams and Air Force also mobilised. Will take all hands required for the rescue ops,” he said.
Odisha chief secretary Pradeep Jena said more than 350 people had been hospitalised. “The government has kept all hospitals on the BalasoreB hubaneswar route ready for this emergency.” After taking stock of the rescue operation, CM Naveen Patnaik said, “I will be flying there early tomorrow to personally oversee the effort.”
Four teams each of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force were sent to join the rescue operation. The railways and the Odisha government set up helplines for information on the passengers.
“Deeply anguished to know about the loss of lives in an unfortunate rail accident in Balasore, Odisha. My heart goes out to the bereaved families. I pray for the success of rescue operations and quick recovery of the injured,” President Droupadi Murmu tweeted.

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