At least 50 people may have been killed in a train crash in Taiwan on Good Friday.
The Taroko Express is said to have derailed nearly 500 passengers in a tunnel in eastern Taiwan on Friday morning, local time.
At least 50 people have been killed, according to Reuters and AFP. The news agency AB reported that more than 51 people had died and the Russian company DOS 54 had died.
More than 146 people are said to have been injured in the train crash, the worst in Taiwan’s history.
“We are working to clarify the course of events,” said local police chief Sai Ding-hsien, according to Reuters.
The official news agency CNA reported that a truck parked without a handbrake may have fallen down a steep slope above the railroad tracks.
– A male passenger on Taiwan TV says that our train collided with a truck.
Construction work is underway on the road parallel to the railway. Pictures of the fire service show the wreckage of a construction vehicle lying near the train.
The driver is being questioned by police. Local media reported that the train driver died in the accident.
The number of deaths and injuries increases in the morning. Recovery missions are required. About 70 people were trapped in the wagons for a long time, which were crushed and twisted in the mine. Many carriages were opened by the force of the collision.
“Recovering those trapped is now our priority,” said Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen. BBC.
In the afternoon, firefighters said no one was caught, but they still found body parts. The death toll is expected to rise further.
Transport Minister Lin Xia-lung told reporters at the scene that the train had 490 passengers on board, which is much higher than the first fire service number of 350.
Many were thrown into the room where they were standing and into the ship.
– People fell on top of each other and lay on top of each other. It was horrible. A woman told a local television station that the whole family was there, the news agency Reuters reported.
The entire train was traveling from Shulin in New Taipei to Taitung, which derailed in a tunnel north of Julian. Several of the eight vehicles are said to have hit the wall in the tunnel.
– Suddenly, violently stupid, I fell to the ground. UTN, an unidentified female television channel, said we smashed windows to climb onto the roof of the car.
Locomotive and first wagon are outside the mine. According to CNN Between 80 and 100 people were rescued from the first four carriages of the train.
As the electricity went out, many people used their cell phones as flashing lights to get out of the mine. Passengers climbed onto the roof and walked with the carriages.
The last four have major material damage and are difficult for rescue crews to reach. According to the railway administration, most of the dead have been found in the last two trains.
The accident happened on a major travel weekend. Taiwanese go home to visit the graves of friends and family and to sacrifice their spirits.
The mountain east coast of Taiwan is a popular tourist destination. The railway from Taipei became famous for its mines where the accident occurred.
In 2018, 18 people were killed and 175 injured when a train derailed in northeastern Taiwan. In 1991, a train crash in northern Taiwan killed 30 people and injured 112, Reuters reported.