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A train derailment in the Indian state of Bihar has killed seven people and left 30 injured.
The incident happened when 11 Seemanchal Express coaches derailed near SahadaiBuzurg Station in the Sonpur Division of East Central Railway.
The train was said to be travelling at full speed when the incident happened, overturning three of the 11 coaches.
Rescue operations at the site are now complete following joint efforts by the railway department, National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), state administration and local volunteers.
“The number of rail accidents in 2018-19 dropped by 18% compared to 2017-18. However, rail fracture incidents have increased by 26%.”
Preliminary investigations suggest that the accident was caused due to a fracture on the railway tracks.
In a statement, the Ministry of Railways said that the commissioner of Railway Safety/Eastern Circle will be conducting an official inquiry of the accident.
An ex gratia compensation of Rs500,000 ($6,975) has been announced for the next of kin of the deceased, Rs100,000 for the grievously injured and Rs50,000 for passengers with minor injuries.
According to the latest data from the railway ministry, the number of rail accidents in 2018-19 dropped by 18% compared to 2017-18. However, rail fracture incidents have increased by 26% over the same period.
Poor track maintenance and extreme weather conditions in the northern part of the country are regarded as the potential reasons for the increase in the number of rail fracture cases.
In the annual budget, the Government of India allocated Rs645.87bn ($9.01bn) for the railways in 2019-20.
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