Balasore: At least 30 passengers were killed while over 200 critically injured in the train accident involving two express trains- Coromandel Express and Howrah-Bengaluru express- at Bahanaga in Balasore district on Friday evening.
First, several bogies of Coromandel express derailed near the station while Howrah-Bengaluru coming from opposite direction hit the derailed coaches.
Many are feared trapped. Massive rescue operations are underway.
Odisha Fire Services chief Sudhanshu Sarangi is supervising rescue operations. Medical colleges and hospitals in and around Balasore have been alerted. The SCB Medical college and Hospital in Cuttack has also been alerted.
Over a hundred personnel of the National Disaster Relief Force (NDRF) and its state counterpart are looking for trapped passengers and cutting through the debris to reach them.
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has directed the Revenue Minister Pramila Malik to rush to the accident site and oversee the rescue operation.
The railways issued six emergency helplines numbers- Howrah helpline – 033 26382217, Kharagpur helpline – 8972073925, 9332392339, Balasore helpline – 8249591559, 7978418322, Shalimar helpline – 9903370746, MAS helpline – 044 25330952, 044 25330953, 044 25354771.
“Nearly 50 ambulances have reported but the injured appear far too many. Large no of buses being mobilised to shift injured to hospital,” said Odisha Chief Secretary PK Jena.
Meanwhile Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said that her government was coordinating with Odisha government and South Eastern Railways for our people’s sake and that she is personally monitoring the situation with Chief Secretary and other senior officers.
Similarly, Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed condolences to the bereaved families.
Distressed by the train accident in Odisha. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with the bereaved families. May the injured recover soon. Spoke to Railway Minister @AshwiniVaishnaw and took stock of the situation. Rescue ops are underway at the site of the mishap and all possible assistance is being given to those affected” Modi tweeted.