Odisha Triple-Train Disaster: Death toll now 288

Odisha Triple-Train Disaster: Death toll now 288 with 1,175 injured

by Niresh Eliatamby 03-06-2023 | 3:23 PM

Colombo (News 1st) - At least 288 people were killed and more than 900 injured in a horrific crash involving three trains, including two passenger express trains, in the Indian state of Odisha on Friday night, Indian media reported.

The Shalimar-Chennai Coromandel Express passenger train bound for Chennai from Kolkata had veered on to an adjacent track near Bahanaga Bazar station, and crashed into a goods train, with several passenger coaches coming to rest on a third track. The Bengaluru-Howrah Superfast Express passenger train, on its way to Howrah from Bengaluru (Bangalore), then slammed into the carriages of the Coromandel Express at approximately 7:20 p.m, with some coaches flying into the air and ending up as heaps of twisted metal.

Rescue workers toiled through the night and throughout Saturday amid the wreckage to find survivors and more than 200 ambulances and a number of buses ferried the injured to hospitals. The government rushed hundreds of rescue workers and 120 doctors to the area. The Indian Air Force deployed helicopters to ferry the injured and dead to hospitals. The two passenger trains were carrying over 3,500 passengers.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived at the crash site on Saturday afternoon and vowed to punish those responsible for the disaster. He earlier tweeted his grief over the loss of lives: “Distressed by the train accident in Odisha. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with the bereaved families. May the injured recover soon. Spoke to Railway Minister and took stock of the situation. Rescue ops are underway at the site of the mishap and all possible assistance is being given to those affected”.

Indian President Droupadi Murmu tweeted: “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”.

"Anguished by the tragic news of the accident involving the Coromandel Express, in Balasore, Odisha. My heart goes out to the bereaved families. Wishing for the speedy recovery of those injured. I urge Congress workers & leaders to extend all support needed for rescue efforts," tweeted Congress leader Rahul Gandhi.