Toll in Andhra Pradesh’s train accident rises to 13, many still critical

Preliminary inquiry by the railways attributed the accident to ‘human error’, claiming that the pilots of the Rayagada-bound train did not stop when the signal was red

Train Accident Andhra Pradesh

Visakhapatnam: The toll in train accident in Andhra Pradesh’s Vizianagaram district has gone up to 13 on Monday, even as condition of four out of over 50 injured people in the crash are said to be critical.

Officials of the East Coast Railway (ECoR) said that the loco and assistant loco pilots of Visakhapatnam-Rayagada passenger train were among those killed in the train mishap. Preliminary inquiry by the railways attributed the accident to ‘human error’, claiming that the pilots of the Rayagada-bound train did not stop when the signal was red.

Also Read: 6 dead, 40 injured as passenger trains collide in Andhra Pradesh

The Rayagada-bound train rammed into Vishakhapatnam-Palasa train waiting on the track between Alamanda and Kantakpalli railway stations on Sunday evening. Four bogies of the second train derailed onto the adjacent track from the impact of the collision.

Railway minister Ashwani Vaishnaw and Railway Board chairman Jaya Varma Sinha were monitoring the situation from a war room. In a post on the social media platform X, Vaishnaw said other than the derailed and affected coaches, others have been cleared from the site.

Also Read: 3 die, many hurt as North East express derails near Raghunathpur

Earlier on Sunday, the railway ministry had announced an ex-gratia of ₹10 lakh for the families of those killed, ₹2.5 lakh each for grievously injured, and ₹50,000 for those who sustained minor injuries.

Officials of the ECoR zone said that rescue and relief operations were hit as the crash had flattened electrical lines and entire area plunged the area into darkness before rescuers could reach the accident site.

Also Read: Day after Balasore train accident: 300 die, 900 still under treatment

At least 13 trains were cancelled, diverted, or terminated as the tracks were blocked. The crash came months after faulty connections in the automated signalling system led to India’s worst rail disaster in two decades on June 2 and left 288 people dead and over 1,000 injured in Odisha’s Bahanaga Bazar. A passenger train hit a stationary freight train before jumping off the tracks and hitting another passenger train in the opposite direction.

Earlier this month, four passengers were killed and 80 injured when coaches of the Delhi-Kamakhya Northeast Express jumped off the track near Raghunathpur station in Bihar’s Buxar district.

Also Read: Signalling failure led to triple train accident at Balasore: Govt

Vizianagaram district collector S Nagalakshmi said 10 of the 13 passengers killed have been identified so far, adding that all those killed and injured were from Andhra Pradesh. “As many as 32 of the injured are undergoing treatment at Vizianagaram government hospital and some seriously injured were shifted to corporate hospitals in Visakhapatnam. The condition of four of them is said to be serious.”

Meanwhile, Andhra Pradesh chief minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy, who announced an ex gratia of ₹10 lakh to each of the kin of those killed and ₹2 lakh to the injured, visited the accident site on Monday and took stock of the relief and track restoration operations. He also met the accident victims at the hospitals in Visakhapatnam.

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