ALEXANDIRIA, EGYPT: At least 32 people have been killed and more than 60 others injured following a collision between two trains in the northern of city of Sohag province, south of the country’s capital Cairo.
A statement released from Egypt’s health ministry revealed that 36 ambulances had been dispatched to the scene and casualties were being taken to local hospitals
“32 people were killed and 66 injured and transported to hospital,” reads part of the statement said from the health authorities.
Three passenger cars were flipped over in the collision. Videos from the scene depicted people still trapped inside.
A photo shared on Twitter showed people gathering around a derailed train carriage.
Egypt’s railway authority said that the accident was caused by an unknown individual applying the emergency brakes in the first train which was subsequently hit by the train behind, causing two carriages to derail, Reuters reported.
“The trains collided while going at not very high speeds, which led to the destruction of two carriages and a third to overturn,” a security source told Reuters.
Egypt’s history of deadly train accidents
Egypt has a history of train accidents caused by poorly maintained equipment and bad management. Official figures recorded 1,793 train accidents in 2017.
One of those accidents left 43 people dead when two trains collided near the Mediterranean port city of Alexandria.
More than 300 people were killed in Egypt’s deadliest train accident when a speeding train caught fire in 2003.
In 2018, President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi said that the government needed around 250 billion Egyptian pounds ($14.1 billion, €11.97 billion) in order to bring the country’s run-down railway system up-to-date.
Egypt has one of the oldest and largest railway networks in Africa.