Tuesday, July 12, 2016

At least 20 dead in south Italy train crash

A train crash in southern Italy killed at least 20 people and injured 30 more on Tuesday, officials said.

Of the injured, 18 are in critical condition.

The crash occurred between the towns Andria and Corato, in south-eastern Italy, at 11:30 am local time (9:30 am GMT).

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said the accident was "dramatic" and that the Minister of Infrastructures Graziano Delrio and the head of the Department of Civil Protection Fabrizio Curcio were traveling to the scene to coordinate rescue efforts.

The accident appeared to have been caused by a frontal crash between two passenger trains traveling on a single-track rail, though the exact circumstances were unknown.

The line was popular with students, workers and families, and several children were among the injured, including one that had to be airlifted to the hospital.

Corato Mayor, Massimo Mazzilli, said on social media that the crash was "a disaster, like if a plane had fallen."

Regional president Giuseppe Corrado said in a statement that blood donations were needed for the local hospital where victims were being taken to.

Two inspectors are set to be sent by Renzi to investigate the causes of the crash.

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