Wed Dec 28, 2016 06:37AM
Rescue and relief works in progress at the site of accident where Ajmer-Sealdah express train derailed early morning near Rura railway station in Kanpur Dehat district on Wednesday. (Source: Indian Express)
Rescue and relief works in progress at the site of accident where Ajmer-Sealdah express train derailed early morning near Rura railway station in Kanpur Dehat district on Wednesday. (Source: Indian Express)

Fifteen coaches of a passenger train have run off the track in India’s Kanpur, in the state of Uttar Pradesh. 2 people have been confirmed dead and dozens more injured.

The incident happened early Wednesday morning as the express train was crossing a bridge in an area about 400 kilometers southeast of New Delhi. Two of the coaches fell over into a dry canal as the train derailed. 

More than 40 passengers have been reported injured, with 8 of them in critical condition. 

One of the passengers said, "Our coach tilted to one side. I jumped out and saw a few coaches were derailed."

Medical relief teams and rescuers were immediately dispatched to the scene to help passengers out of the derailed carriages and provide them with treatment.

Officials are investigating the exact cause of the incident.

Train accidents pose a big challenge to Indian officials. The world’s fourth largest railway system is notorious for its poor safety standards.

In 2015, 7 train collisions and derailments left a total of 65 dead in India, whereas in 2016, nearly 150 people were killed in a single incident alone. Over 200 others were injured when over a dozen coaches of the Indore-Patna Express train derailed in Kanpur Dehat district of Uttar Pradesh on November 20. The tragic incident prompted railway officials to call for a hefty budget of 17.5 billion dollars to improve safety and modernize the network.

The year 2016 was marked by several deadly train accidents around the world.

In Italy, 23 people were killed and dozens injured in a train collision between Bari and Baletta. In Cameroon, 55 people lost their lives and over 570 were injured after a train derailed en route to the port city of Douala. A railway accident in Pakistan's Karachi left 20 people dead and around 70 injured. And in Iran, at least 44 passengers died and dozens were injured when four carriages of a train derailed and two of them caught fire.