Egypt train crash: Rescue work continues as toll rises to 44

RSTV Bureau
Alexandria : Army attend the scene of a train collision just outside Egypt - Mediterranean port city of Alexandria on Friday, Aug. 11, 2017,  AP/ PTI

Alexandria : Army attend the scene of a train collision just outside Egypt – Mediterranean port city of Alexandria on Friday, Aug. 11, 2017, AP/ PTI

At least 44 people were killed and nearly 180 others injured after two trains collided near Egypt’s coastal city of Alexandria on Friday evening.

Authorities ordered a probe into the collision even as they warned that the toll may rise.

The deadly collision took place after a train travelling to Alexandria from Cairo, crashed into the back of another train coming from the Canal city of Port Said, which was waiting at a small station in the district of Khorshid, the Egyptian Railways Authority said in a statement.

Rescue team continued its search for survivors through the night and removed wreckage off the tracks.

“The rescue team is currently searching for survivals while ambulances are transferring the injured to nearby hospitals,” said Magdy Hegazi, undersecretary at the Health ministry.

The Al-Masri el-Youm Arabic newspaper quoted Iman Hamdy, a 26-year-old survivor, saying that the train abruptly stopped for 15 minutes in Ebies area near Khorshid station when she felt its collision with the another train.

Hamdy, who succeeded in escaping from the train through one of the windows, said that she saw hundreds of injured, mostly women and children, at the accident site.

The driver of the Cairo-Alexandria train surrendered himself to police.

President El-Sisi expressed his condolences to the victims and ordered government bodies to follow up on the probe.

In 2016, a train derailed in south of Cairo, killing five people, and injuring 27 people in the al-Ayat area. Another train derailment in Badr Rashin in Giza killed at least 19 people in 2013.

In 2012, a collision between a train and school bus on a rail crossing in the town of Manaflut in Upper Egypt killed 51 people, mostly children.

At least 360 people were killed in 2002 in Egypt’s worst train disaster when a major fire engulfed seven carriages of an overcrowded passenger train.

(With inputs from agencies)