RAHIM YAR KHAN: The death toll from Thursday’s train collision in Sadiqabad rose to 23, as the bodies of a child and a man were found from the rubble.
A day earlier, the Akbar Bugti Express travelling from Lahore to Quetta collided with a stationary freight train at the Walhar Railway Station in Sadiqabad Tehsil of Punjab province.
The freight train was standing on the loop line when the passenger train, instead of running on the mainline, went on the wrong track. The accident saw carriages derail while the engine of the passenger train was completely destroyed.
Rescuers used cranes to enable them to pick through some of the twisted wreckage to find the bodies.
According to officials, rescuers have pulled out all the dead and injured from the wreckage and they are now focusing on clearing the track. Work to clear the track will continue today.
An initial investigation report into the accident said the failure of the signal system behind the Akbar Bugti Express crashing into the stationary freight train.
However, Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed while speaking to Geo News said the train accident near Sadiqabad was the result of human negligence.
“The train accident occurred due to negligence and I have ordered an investigation into the incident,” he said.
Rasheed further said all assistance will be provided to the families of the deceased and the injured. He added, Rs1.5 million will be given as compensation to the families of those killed in the accident, while Rs500,000 will be given to those critically injured.
Rs200,000 will be given to those with minor injuries.
The remaining passengers have arrived in Quetta. No railway official was present at the station when the passengers of the Akbar Bugti Express arrived in Quetta.