Truck loaded with pilgrims smashed by trains in Pakistan

When the train hit a locked truck, the vehicle was pushed three to four kilometers past the track body. 22 killed.

At least 22 Sikh pilgrims, including 19 from the same family, were killed on Friday when a train collided with a truck in eastern Pakistan, authorities said.

The truck was crossing an unguarded railroad crossing.

“It was an unguarded railway crossing and the driver made a quick decision to drive over the rails,” a spokeswoman for Pakistan Railways, Quratul Ain, said.

Hung says the passengers in the truck were Sikh pilgrims.

According to local eyewitnesses, the usual guarded rail crossing is closed. So the driver chose the unguarded one.

But the truck got stuck on its way over the rails. When the train hit, the vehicle was pushed three to four kilometers across the track.

– About 20 people lost their lives in the tragic collision. Two later died of their injuries. So the death toll reached 22, the Pakistani Interior Ministry said in a statement.

Earlier, local police spokesman Wajid Abbas said there were 30 pilgrims on the truck. The 19 killed were from the same family.

No train passengers came along.

Accidents are frequent in unguarded railway crossings in Pakistan, where there are sometimes missing signals.

The country’s railways have been in decline for decades. This is due to corruption, mismanagement and lack of investment.

In October, at least 74 people were killed and dozens injured when gas bottles exploded on a train packed with pilgrims in Punjab province.

/ Ritzau / AFP