JOHANNESBURG, March 18 – A train derailment in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s (DRC) Kasai province in the centre-west of the country has killed at least 24 people and injured over 30.
Vietnam News reports quoting police and medical services on Monday said that the freight train was carrying stowaways when it derailed on Sunday.
“We have retrieved 24 bodies, mostly children. It is a provisional toll because the wagons are still overturned,” a railway police official in Bena Leka, 140 km north of Kananga, one of the main towns in Kasai, said.
“Several wagons have fallen into the water at the bridge over the Luembe River and five more wagons are still overturned.”
As the injured were rushed to hospital in nearby Kakenge, many in a critical state, doctor Jean Claude Tshimanga said his hospital was overwhelmed by the number of injured and that medical staff had worked overnight to help the victims.
This was the third derailment in the DRC in about a month. Five people were killed in a passenger train accident last month at the station in Kalenda.
Decaying infrastructure and ageing locomotives dating from the sixties result in regular rail accidents. (ANA)