NEW DELHI, June 2: At least 30 people were killed and over 300 injured when four coaches of the Coromandel Express from Kolkata to Chennai derailed in Odisha’s Balasore district on Friday evening after a head-on collision with a goods train, officials said.
At least 47 injured persons have been admitted to a Balasore hospital while many are feared trapped under the derailed bogies, official sources said. Rescue teams have reached the site where the Coromandel Express collided with the freight train. Visuals of the train accident site shows four derailed coaches.
Odisha Fire Services chief Sudhanshu Sarangi is supervising rescue operations. Medical colleges and hospitals in and around Balasore have been alerted.
Over a hundred personnel of the National Disaster Relief Force (NDRF) and its state counterpart are looking for trapped passengers and cutting through the debris to reach them.
The accident happened around 7.20 pm near Bahanaga Bazar station in Balasore district. The Coromandel Express was on the way to Chennai Central station from the Shalimar station near Kolkata. Several ambulances have been dispatched to the scene and the injured are being shifted to a community health centre in Soro, officials said.
Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force has rushed to the accident spot for search and rescue operations. Five ambulances have been sent from Bhadrak. Accident relief trains have also been dispatched to the spot, officials said.
Reacting to the incident, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee expressed shock and said, “Some of our outbound people have been seriously affected/ injured.” “We are sending a 5-6 members team to the spot to cooperate with the Odisha government and railway authorities and to assist rescue operations,” she added.
Some official sources quoting preliminary information said the 12841 Coromandel Express got derailed near Bahanaga railway station and the derailed train then subsequently hit a goods train. Several bogies overturned in the incident, trapping many passengers underneath.
The Railways have announced following Helpline Numbers in view of the accident: Howrah helpline – 033 26382217 KGP helpline – 8972073925, 9332392339 BLS helpline – 8249591559, 7978418322 SHM helpline – 9903370746 MAS helpline – 044 25330952, 044 25330953, 044 25354771.