ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — Two categorical trains collided in southern Pakistan on Monday morning, killing not less than 30 passengers and injuring 50 others, officers mentioned, the newest in a collection of prepare accidents which have raised severe questions in regards to the security of rail journey within the nation.
A lot of the passengers have been asleep when the Millat Specific, a passenger prepare plying the southern port metropolis of Karachi to Sargodha in Punjab Province, derailed and fell throughout the observe. Inside minutes, one other passenger prepare, the Sir Syed Specific, which was en path to Karachi from Lahore in jap Pakistan, crashed into the primary prepare’s fallen carriages, leaving a mangled wreck, native information shops reported.
The collision occurred between railway stations in Daharki and Raiti within the southern Sindh Province, mentioned Nazia Jabeen, a spokeswoman for Pakistan Railways.
A rescue operation was underway, Ms. Jabeen mentioned. A number of of the injured have been admitted to hospitals within the Rohri, Pannu Aqil and Sukkur districts, she mentioned, including that the demise toll was prone to rise.
The Pakistan Military mentioned army medical doctors and paramedical workers from a close-by base have been participating within the aid effort. Military and paramilitary troops have been already on the accident web site, and two military helicopters have been participating in evacuations.
Prime Minister Imran Khan mentioned on Twitter that he was “shocked by the horrific prepare accident” and had ordered a “complete investigation into railway security fault strains.”
Azam Khan Swati, the Pakistan Railways minister, mentioned a high-level inquiry has been ordered to probe the reason for the collision. “It’s too early to say whether or not the accident was resulting from sabotage or as a result of dilapidated situation of the prepare observe,” Mr. Swati mentioned.
Pakistan has an abysmal train-safety report, and the system is stricken by corruption and mismanagement. Guarantees by successive governments to overtake the system have remained unfulfilled. Mr. Khan, who got here to energy in 2018, had vowed to modernize the system’s poorly maintained sign system and getting older tracks, and to make sure its security mechanisms.
However prepare accidents have been frequent below Mr. Khan’s authorities, as effectively. Greater than 70 folks have been killed when a prepare caught fireplace in 2019, in one of many worst prepare accidents lately.
In 2005, three trains crashed in a lethal chain-reaction after a prepare driver misinterpret a sign, killing not less than 127 folks and injuring a whole lot extra in southern Pakistan. Not less than 210 folks died and 700 others have been injured in 1990, when a prepare on a 500-mile in a single day run south from Multan to Karachi hit an empty freight prepare. Officers blamed an improperly set swap.