23 killed as fast train catches fire in south India

23 killed as fast train catches fire in south India
# 28 December 2013 03:53 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. Twenty-three people were feared killed as an AC coach Express caught fire in southeast Indian state of Andhra Pradesh on Saturday morning, local news channel NDTV reported, APA reports quoting Xinhua.

The fire broke out in the second AC coach of the train which was headed to Nanded from Bengalore. There were about 72 passengers in the coach.

Railway authorities say that the train might have caught flames around 3.20 a.m. The driver stopped the train soon after the fire.

Several people were reported to jump out of the train on noticing the fire. Twelve others are said to be injured by local police. "The fire is being doused. The bodies will be brought out once the smoke subsides a little. We are expecting at least 23 casualties, although the exact figure can be given only after the rescue operation is over," said Dharmavaram Railway Police Inspector Sai Prasad, who was overseeing the rescue work.

While the B1 three-tier air conditioned coach can usually accommodate around 64 passengers, some coaches can even accommodate 72 persons. However, the exact information regarding the capacity of the coach and the number of people who had boarded the train is yet to be known.

The toll could be substantially higher since several of the injured were in critical condition with burn injuries.

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