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Secunderabad-Manmad Express derails, 18 dead, 41 injured

Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad | January 03, 2003 22:29 IST

Eighteen passengers were killed and 41 injured when the Secunderabad-Manmad Express derailed at Ghatnandur railway station in Maharashtra's Beed district after ramming into a stationary goods train in the early hours of Friday.

South Central Railway spokesman P Krishnaiah told rediff.com that the accident occurred about 330km north of Hyderabad around 0130 IST.

The SCR general manager and senior officials rushed to the spot by a special train with para-medical staff.

This is the second rail accident in the region in a fortnight and Railways Minister Nitish has said that 'human failure' was responsible. He has also warned of stern action against the erring officials, some of who fled the spot after the incident.

Of the 41 injured, several were rendered first aid at the site while seven were admitted to the Ambajogai government medical hospital, 18km from Ghatnandur.

Four grievously injured, including two children, were flown by an IAF helicopter to Hyderabad, a senior railway official in Hyderabad said.

The remaining passengers were taken to Parli railway station by buses and they resumed their onward journey to Manmad by train.

According to preliminary reports, the Express train, which was to move into a loop line, accidentally got into the main line and rammed into a goods train.

As a result, the engine and three coaches (the passenger-cum-luggage van, a general coach and one AC 3-tier coach) of the Express train derailed. The fate of the driver of the express train was not known immediately.

Meanwhile, a special train with relatives of the passengers left for the accident site from Secunderabad station at 0930 IST.

Union Minister of State for Railways Bandaru Dattatreya and Railway Board chairman I I M S Rana rushed to the accident site by helicopter.

Commissioner of Railway Safety (SCR) A P Agarwal will hold the statutory enquiry into the cause of the accident at the Parli Vaijanath railway station on January five and six at 1000 IST, Krishnaiah told rediff.com.

The railways suspended five of its personnel, including two officers, in connection with the accident, a senior rail official told PTI.

The suspended officials are Prashant Kumar Verma (Asst Station Manager, Ghatnandur), Vinayak Neelakantha, Shesharao Sayedu (pointsmen, Ghatnandur), Srinivas Suryavanshi (Traffic Inspector) and G Krishnaih (Division Safety officer).

The SCR has opened helplines for the public to obtain details about the passengers. The numbers are:
040--27702056
040--27830438
02446--252732
02591--222242

With inputs from PTI

EXTERNAL LINKS:
South Central Railway
List of dead
List of those injured

RELATED REPORT:
Nitish blames 'human failure'

More reports from Andhra Pradesh
More reports from Maharashtra

 


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