Train tragedy in storm kills six
SIX people died when a passenger train was hit by debris from a freight wagon on a bridge linking Denmark’s two main islands yesterday.
There were 16 more casualties on the intercity express carrying 131 passengers towards Copenhagen.
Reports claimed the train was hit by a trailer or tarpaulin that had come loose from a passing Carlsberg freight train. Police said there had been “considerable damage” to the train but were unable to confirm the exact cause.
A passenger said: “There was a very, very loud bang and then the train stopped.” Another witness said survivors had to step over dead bodies in order to escape.
The accident happened during a severe storm that hampered the rescue operation on the 11-mile Great Belt Bridge between Zealand and Funen. Danish prime minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen said the accident had “shaken us all”. He tweeted: “Ordinary Danes on their way to work or on the way home from Christmas holidays have had their lives shattered.”
An investigation showed a trailer had blown off a freight wagon. The Great Belt, part of a route that links Denmark and Sweden to Germany, carries around 21,000 passengers and 27,000 vehicles daily.
Swedish prime minister Stefan Lofven blamed the weather for the “terrible train accident”. He said: “Our thoughts are with the injured and with the families and relatives of the dead.”
The smashed front of the passenger train in the crash on the bridge, above