From Triple Train Crash In Odisha To Firozabad Collision, 10 Deadliest Accidents In 3 Decades

OB Bureau

Bhubaneswar: At least 60 people are feared dead and over 600 injured in an accident involving two passengers and one freight at Bahanaga railway station in Odisha’s Balasore district on Friday.

At around 7 pm, 10-12 coaches of the Shalimar-Chennai Coromandel Express derailed near Balasore and fell on the opposite track. After some time, Yashwantpur-Howrah Superfast dashed into those derailed bogies resulting in the derailment of its 3-4 coaches. A third freight train was also involved in the accident, Odisha Chief Secretary Pradeep Jena told the media.

Six NDRF teams are carrying out rescue operations along four units of ODRAF and Fire Service personnel at train crash site. The injured are being sent to a hospital in Balasore.

“About 50 ambulances have been mobilised to the site. Chief District Medical Officer (CDMO) and his team are on the site, directing ambulances and first aid. 50 doctors have been mobilised from other districts. Team of doctors have also been dispatched from SCB Medical College and Hospitals. Private hospitals in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack are ready to receive patients,” said Health Secretary Shalini Pandit.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has announced an ex-gratia of Rs. 2 lakh from PMNRF to the next of kin of each deceased in the train mishap. The injured would be given Rs. 50,000.

Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw has announced that compensation to the victims of the accident will be Rs. 10 Lakh in case of death, Rs. 2 Lakh for grievous injuries and Rs. 50,000 for minor injuries.

At least 51 trains were diverted, cancelled and terminated after the accident.

Here’s a look at some of the worst train tragedies in India:

On January 13, 2022, 12 coaches of the Bikaner-Guwahati Express went off the rails in West Bengal’s Alipurduar, leaving 9 persons dead and 36 others injured. More than 1,000 passengers were on board at the time of the accident, according to the Northeast Frontier Railway. Equipment failure was cited as the accident’s cause.

October 19, 2018, over 60 people were killed when a crowd of Dussehra revellers spilled onto railway tracks while watching burning of Ravana effigy was run over by a speeding train near Amritsar’s Jora Phatak.

On April 26. 2018, 13 school children died and 8 were injured when the school bus carrying nearly 25 students collided with a speeding Siwan-Gorakhpur passenger train at an unmanned crossing in Uttar Pradesh’s Kushinagar, around 50 km from Gorakhpur. Most of the children in the bus were below 10 years of age.

On August 20, 2017, 23 people were killed and 40 injured when 14 coaches of Kalinga Utkal Express derailed in Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar district and coaches rammed into each other as well as a house close to the tracks. The train from Puri in Odisha was on its way to Haridwar in Uttarakhand.

On  July 7, 2011, 69 people were killed when Chhapra-Mathura Express collided with a bus near Etah district in Uttar Pradesh.

On August 1, 1999, more than 300 people were killed after Awadh-Assam Express rammed into Brahmaputra Mail at Gaisal, 500 km north of the West Bengal capital, Kolkata. The trains exploded upon collision as it rammed into each other at a very high speed. Gross miscalculation and miscommunication between station masters led to the tragedy.

On November 26, 1998, Calcutta-bound Sealdah Express rammed into three of Frontier Mail’s detached bogies that had overturned on the adjacent track, resulting in the death of 212 people. Over 1,500 people were trapped in the wreckage of badly damaged compartments.

On August 20, 1995, Purushottam Express rammed into Kalindi Express, which had stopped suddenly after hitting a cow on the tracks, in Uttar Pradesh’s Firozabad, killing 358 people. The tragedy is considered to be the worst train accident in India after 1981.

On June 6 1981, nearly 200 persons were feared drowned when seven of the nine bogies of an overcrowded a passenger train derailed from a bridge and plunged into Baghmati river at Balaghat in Bihar. It is believed that the derailment was caused due to flash floods and cyclones.

Some other crashes:

  • On July 8, 1981, the Island Express collided with a local passenger train near Peruman, Kerala, killing 150 people.
  • On November 20, 2016, the Indore-Patna Express derailed near Pukhrayan, Uttar Pradesh, resulting in the death of 150 people.
OB Bureau

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