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At least 32 people killed in Andhra Pradesh train fire PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 04 August 2008

Hyderabad, India, Aug. 2 ( - At least 32 people died when a fire believed to have been sparked by a short-circuit spread through a train early on Friday while many passengers were asleep, the government and police said.

Five coaches of the Gautami Express, which was travelling from Hyderabad, capital of the southern state of Andhra Pradesh, to Kakinada on the coast, were gutted in the massive pre-dawn fire, the railway ministry said.

Television pictures showed a carriage with its exterior paint scorched off from the heat with flames glowing through the windows in the pre-dawn darkness. Bars covered the glassless windows, as is common in standard coaches.

Railway officials have ruled out sabotage and said the fire was apparently caused by a short-circuit.

Rescue workers had difficulty reaching the accident site, which was inaccessible by road and were further hampered by the darkness.

Around 15 million people travel every day on India's massive railway network. Cheaper carriages tend to be overcrowded, resulting in higher death tolls when accidents happen.

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