A passenger train rammed into a freight train at a railway station in southern Pakistan yesterday, killing at least 20 people and injuring 74 others, hospital officials said.
The freight train was stationary when the speeding passenger train struck it at Walhar Railway Station in Rahim Yar Khan, in the eastern Punjab province. Jamil Ahmed, an official in the provincial government, said hospitals declared an emergency.
Twenty people were killed in the train crash and 74 were wounded, with some in critical condition, according to Javed Ahmed, a physician treating the wounded. Prime Minister Imran Khan ordered authorities to provide the best possible medical care to the victims and said he was saddened by the news.
Khan ordered Railways Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmad to “take emergency steps to counter decades of neglect of railway infrastructure” and ensure safety standards. And in central Niger, eleven people drowned yesterday when their boat capsized on a river, the governor of the region told AFP. The accident happened near the town of Maradi, said governor Zakari Oumarou of the Maradi region near the border with Nigeria.
“Three or four passengers” of the boat were also reported missing, a local source added. The Goulbi is a seasonal river that originates in Nigeria. “In the rainy season, the Goulbi cuts off the roads, obliging inhabitants to take small boats to go from one place to another,” a resident told AFP.
In June, the UN warned the Sahel desert country risks floods affecting as many as 170,000 people this rainy season, which lasts about three months. In 2018, heavy rains were blamed for the deaths of 52 people and the destruction of 170,000 homes.
The waters also destroyed 8,000 hectares of crops, killed 33,000 head of cattle and damaging schools and drinking water wells. The year before, 56 people died in flooding which affected some 206,000 people in total.