Indian runaway train takes 1,000 passengers on engineless journey

Indian runaway train takes 1,000 passengers on engineless journey
April 08, 2018   Tatjana Muskiet
India’s railway ministry said a “ghastly” accident had narrowly been avoided after 22 passenger carriages carrying about 1,000 people became detached from a train engine and sped backwards for miles before being stopped. The runaway carriages rolled for seven miles in the north-eastern state of Odisha before being brought to a shuddering halt by rocks placed on the tracks by railway staff. A spokesman for the railway ministry’s eastern division said on Sunday that none of about 1,000 passengers had been injured in the incident on Saturday night.
Seven railway employees who were reported not to have followed proper procedures were suspended and an investigation was opened into how the carriages became separated during the journey from the western state of Gujarat to Odisha, said JP Mishra, a spokesman. Authorities believe that brakes normally applied when carriages are detached or attached to an engine were either incorrectly used or overlooked altogether. “Something ghastly could have happened and it was averted by alert staff. Safety cannot be compromised,” Mishra told AFP. He said more heads were likely to roll, adding: “Everybody in the railways [ministry] is aghast and shocked.”(theguardian)…[+]