killed as train derails near Bengaluru

Wednesday 18th February 2015 05:12 EST

Bengaluru: At least 9 people were killed and over 40 people were injured when eight coaches of Bengaluru-Ernakulam Intercity Express derailed near Bidaragere village, 40 km from Bengaluru. Among the injured was a Polish couple.

At 7.45 am, passengers heard a loud noise. Eight coaches, including two AC bogies, derailed and D9, a reserved sitting coach, telescoped into D8. All the dead are reported to be from D8, while many passengers from other coaches were also injured.

A preliminary investigation has not been able to confirm the cause of the accident, railway minister Suresh Prabhu said. The South Western Railway has ruled out overspeeding as the reason. An inquiry has been ordered and commissioner of railway safety (southern circle) S K Mittal would conduct the probe.

The accident could have been worse if it had happened amid fields a few km ahead. Mud walls on either side of the track prevented the coaches from rolling over. Loco pilot Fernandes said: “After crossing the Carmelram outer junction near Bidaragere, I reduced the speed on seeing an S-band curve. The engine had almost crossed the band when I heard a loud noise. When I peeped out of my cabin, I was shocked to see that the fifth and sixth bogies had swayed to the right. The train was running at 72 kmph, and it took us nearly 30 seconds to bring the train to a halt. I had to apply emergency brakes. I felt a jolt and realized something terrible had happened. Bogies had crashed into each other.'' The railway minister announced an ex-gratia of Rs 200,000 to the relatives of the dead, Rs 50,000 to those grievously injured, and Rs 20,000 to those who sustained simple injuries.

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