Train officials have reported at least 280 people were killed and over 900 injured when the two passenger trains collided in the eastern Indian state of Odisha. Railroad ministry spokesperson, Amitabh Sharma, stated that 10 to 12 coaches of one train derailed, and debris from some of the mangled coaches fell onto a nearby track. It was hit by another passenger train coming from the opposite direction. Up to 3 coaches of the second train also derailed.
The Howrah Superfast Express derailed and crashed into the Coromandel Express, South Eastern Railway authorities reported. The derailed Coromandel Express was traveling from Howrah in West Bengal state to Chennai, the capital of southern Tamil Nadu state. The scene of the train crash is around 220 kilometres (137 miles) southwest of Kolkata.
The top administrator in the Balasore district, Dattatraya Bhausaheb Shinde, said there are at least 200 people trapped in the train wreckage. Although there are still no official reports of the dead and injured, the media is reporting at least 280 have died. Odisha Chief Secretary Pradeep Jena reported that over 900 passengers have been sent to nearby hospitals. The Chief Minister confirmed that their first priority is to “remove the living to the hospitals.”
Nearly 500 police officers and rescue workers with 75 ambulances and buses are responding to the train crash. India Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted that “all possible assistance” is being given to those involved in the train crash. PM Modi said he was distressed by the accident and also tweeted; “In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with the bereaved families. May the injured recover soon.”
The Federal Minister for Railways, Ashwini Vaishnaw, tweeted that rescue teams have been mobilised from Kolkata in West Bengal and from Odisha’s Bhubaneswar. Minister Vaishnaw added that the National Disaster Response Force, air force, and state government teams have also been mobilized to respond to the crash. The India train crash is under investigation.