Karachi train derailment cause still being investigated, says Pak Railways official

December 20th, 2007 - 8:09 pm ICT by admin  

Islamabad, Dec.20 (ANI): Pakistan Railway authorities said on Thursday that the cause of Wednesday’s train derailment in Karachi was still being ascertained.
“The real cause has not been ascertained yet,” said operations manager Junaid Qureshi.
“Apparently a portion of the track cracked in the winter cold. Normally there is a margin of error and things do not end up like this,” he said.
Initial reports said a welded bit of track had broken in the bitterly cold weather, sending the Karachi Express hurtling off the rails. The company said 35 people died, but the military put the death toll at 50.
Hundreds of people have been killed in recent years on Pakistan’s ageing railway system and it is not always known how many passengers are on board a train, making tolls difficult to assess.
The News quoted Qureshi as saying that around 250 people had been injured, and that 35 people were still in hospital. Ten of them were in critical condition, he added.
Meanwhile, a special train carrying over 400 passengers has reached the Lahore Railway station from the accident site in Mehrabpur.
Touching scenes were witnessed at the Lahore Railway station soon after the arrival of the six-bogied special train.
Passengers and their family members embraced each other and wept. People ran helter-skelter to meet their loved ones at the venue.
Panicky commuters continued to relate that the relief work started late by three hours, and blamed this delay for the huge death toll. (ANI)

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