India train crash: Rescuers work overnight to find survivors
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India train crash: Rescuers work overnight to find survivors

21 November 2016 10:55
Photo: Photo resource - AFP/GETTY IMAGES

Rescuers have worked through the night to pull survivors out of a deadly train crash in India's northern Uttar Pradesh state, the BBC reported.

At least 120 people are dead after the Indore-Patna Express derailed at 03:00 local time on Sunday (21:30 GMT Saturday), near the city of Kanpur.

The death toll could rise as workers reach the worst-hit carriages.

The cause of the crash is not known, though reports said a track fracture could be to blame.

Train accidents are fairly common in India, where much of the railway equipment is out of date.

Early on Monday the railway ministry published a list of names of injured passengers. Out of the 131 listed, 58 were said to be "grievously injured". Earlier reports quoted officials as saying more than 150 people were injured.

The derailment had the strongest impact on the first two carriages of the train behind the engine, which crashed into each other and overturned. Most of the victims were located in these carriages.

Rescuers have been using metal cutters, torches and cranes to open up the carriages and extricate people.

According to the Indian Express the carriages were outdated and known for piling up in accidents. The report said the government had promised earlier this year to upgrade all trains.

Daljeet Chaudhary, a director general of police, told the Associated Press that he expected the death toll to rise as rescue workers had yet to gain access to one of the worst-damaged carriages.

The train may have also been carrying far more passengers that it was supposed to, reports said.

Although the official number of passengers was about 1,200, the Times of India said as many as another 500 could have been on the train without tickets, citing unnamed railway officials as sources.