The death count has increased to 13 in the train accident in Andhra Pradesh last evening. Besides, 40 passengers were injured and are under treatment at various hospitals in the state.
Here are the top 10 points in this big story:
- The accident occurred between two passenger trains on the Howrah-Chennai line last evening in Vizianagaram district.
- A special passenger train between Visakhapatnam and Palasa had stopped on the tracks between Alamanda and Kantakapalle due to no signal when a Vizag-Raigad passenger train hit it from behind. Three coaches were derailed in the impact.
- Railways sources said the tragedy was a result of human error, adding that signalling was not noticed by loco pilot. Pictures from the site last evening showed the coaches derailed and people crowding around. Except the derailed and affected coaches, the site was cleared by midnight, said Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw.
- All 40 injured persons are from Andhra Pradesh and four of them are critical, updated Vizianagaram District administration. A railway spokesperson had confirmed the nine deaths last night.
- The railway minister has announced financial assistance of ₹ 10 lakh for the family of those who died. Those who suffered serious injuries will get ₹ 2.5 lakh and passengers with minor injuries will get ₹ 50,000, he said.
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi has reviewed the situation and condoled the loss of lives. He announced another ₹ 2 lakh assistance for the family of those who died in the accident and ₹ 50,000 for the injured.
- The railway minister also spoke to Chief Minister YSR Jagan Mohan Reddy. Mr Reddy expressed deep shock over the accident and ordered all arrangements to be made to ensure treatment of the injured. He has also sought time-to-time update on the incident.
- The war room in Delhi railway ministry is monitoring the situation, said the Railways source. The East Coast Railway has released helpline numbers (Bhubaneswar – 0674-2301625, 2301525, 2303069, and Waltair – 0891-2885914.)
- Divisional Railway Manager Saurabh Prasad, who visited the accident site, said last night the final death figure could be ascertained after the coaches are checked. He further said they are in the process of separating the entangled coaches and would get a clearer picture once that is done.
- Nearly five months ago, a horrific accident involving three trains killed over 280 passengers in Odisha. The Shalimar-Chennai Central Coromandel Express, Bengaluru-Howrah Superfast Express and a goods train were involved in the accident on June 2 near the Bahanaga Bazar station