Indian death crash train sped through red light

Indian death crash train sped through red light

One of the Indian trains in a crash that killed more than 60 people was travelling three times faster than it should have been and ignored signals to stop, investigators said today.

The Uttarbanga Express hit a passenger train that was about to pull out of Sainthia station, about 125 miles from Calcutta yesterday, killing 63 and injuring scores more.

Initial findings have shown that the Uttarbanga was travelling at 55 miles per hour even though it was due to stop at the station.

A signal operator said it sped toward the station despite a red signal, indicating that it should slow down and stop. At the time, the Vananchal Express was just beginning to leave the platform.

The operator said he tried to communicate with the driver, but the train did not stop. The driver was among those killed in the crash.

Accidents are relatively common on India's sprawling rail network, which is one of the world's largest but lacks modern signalling and communication systems. Most crashes are blamed on poor maintenance and human error.

Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee initially raised the possibility that the crash was caused by sabotage, but there was no immediate indication that rebels were to blame.

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