At Least 30 Dead After Trains Collide in India

At least 30 people have been killed and hundreds injured in a multiple train collision in India’s eastern Odisha state, local officials say.

Nearly 50 ambulances were sent to the scene in the Balasore district, the state’s chief secretary said.

Pradeep Jena added that two passenger trains and a goods train were involved.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was distressed by Friday evening’s incident, and his thoughts were with the bereaved families.

“Rescue ops are underway at the site of the mishap and all possible assistance is being given to those affected,” he tweeted.

Meanwhile, Home Minister Amit Shah labelled the incident “deeply agonising”.

At least 30 people died, senior fire service official Sudhanshu Sarangi told local broadcaster NDTV. He said that about 400 people had been injured.

The toll “may go up… at the moment there is no clarity on that”, Mr Sarangi said.

The way the crash unfolded remains unclear.

It is believed that several carriages from the Shalimar-Chennai Coromandel Express derailed at around 19:00 local time (13:30 GMT), with several carriages ending up on the opposite track.

Another train – travelling from Yesvantpur to Howrah – is then thought to have hit the overturned carriages.

Some surviving passengers were seen rushing in to help rescue those trapped in the wreckage.

Rescue efforts were planned to continue into the night.

Rail accidents are relatively common in India – occurring several hundreds times a year, according to the Associated Press news agency.

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