One dead, 30 hurt as train, truck collide near Tokyo

Source:AFP Published: 2019/9/5 18:23:41

An express train travelling at around 120 kilometers per hour smashed into a truck at a crossing south of Tokyo Thursday, sparking a blaze and killing one person with around 30 others injured.

A Keikyu train that derailed after a collision with a truck is seen in Yokohama, the capital of Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan on Thursday. Photo: VCG

The crash derailed the train's front carriage and pinned the truck to a wall, as it burst into flames, spewing black smoke into the air and its cargo of citrus fruit on to the tracks.

The force of the impact shattered the train's front window and bent an overhead power line, with witnesses describing an intense fire and panic among the 500 passengers on board the train as it sped through the crossing near Yokohama, south of Tokyo.

"Emergency crews took 30 injured people into care. Of those, two sustained serious injuries. Of those severely injured, the hospital has confirmed the death of one person," a fire department official told reporters at the scene.

National broadcaster NHK said the truck driver was pinned under the train but it was not immediately clear whether he was the victim. Another woman in her 20s was also seriously injured.

According to the Keikyu train company operating the service, the driver said he had applied the emergency brake but too late to prevent the collision.

The company said it had launched an investigation into the accident that took place just before noon.

"The maximum speed there is set at 120 kilometers per hour and we believe the train was travelling as fast as that," a Keikyu spokesman, who declined to be named, told AFP.

"There is an abnormality detection system there for emergencies and cases such as a truck getting stuck on the crossing. This system kicked in and an alarm signal was flickering," added this spokesman.

Eyewitnesses spoke of a fierce fire and panic, with TV images showing terrified passengers streaming from the carriages after the collision.

One man who was travelling in the first carriage told national broadcaster NHK there was a "sudden sound" and that the impact left people in heaps. 


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