NEWS

Italy Train Crash: 20 Dead In Puglia Collision

12/07/2016 12:14 | Updated 12 July 2016

Up to 20 people have been killed in a train crash in southern Italy, officials say.

Many were also injured when the two trains collided head-on in the middle of an olive grove in Puglia.

The trains, each with four cars, collided near the town of Andria on a line with just a single track, according to news agency ANSA and Sky TG24. Police say the accident happened on between the towns of Corato and Andria.  

ASSOCIATED PRESS
The trains collided head-on in the southern region of Pugli

A photo of the crash showed cars crumpled together and forced off the tracks at sharp angles.

News reports said rescue workers were pulling victims from the rubble, including a small child who was alive.

Video images showed ambulances responding to the scene with other rescue workers.

“I went barefoot under the rubble, I dug under the sheets, and I managed to save my husband. I saw people in pieces,” one survivor told an Italian news channel. 

Another added: “I was listening to music, when suddenly I found myself on the ground. I also saw the controller on the ground. It was ugly, I managed to free myself after five minutes. When I got up I saw hell.” 

A boy of seven was also pulled from the wreckage as officials appealed for blood donations, explaining there could still be survivors inside. 

Italy’s prime ministerMatteo Renzi said the train crash “is a moment of tears” and has pledged not to rest until a cause is determined.

Mayor Massimo Mazzilli of Corato told Sky TG25 that rescue workers had just pulled out a passenger alive and were poised to extract a second one.

On his Facebook page, Mazzilli posted photos of the mangled steel trains.

He wrote: “It’s a disaster, as if an airplane fell. Rescue workers and civil protection is on the scene, but unfortunately there are victims!”

Both trains belong to a local private rail company, Ferrotramviaria SpA.

Italy’s national rail service, Ferrovia dello Stato, identified the company in a statement, offering its condolences and support services.

Ferrotramviaria is a Bari-based private train company that connects the capital of Puglia with regional towns to the north and the airport, operating about 20 small electric trains. It was founded in 1937 and serves students and commuters.

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