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11 Jan 2017

Toy train jumps track, six injured

The derailed engine and the compartment of the toy train near Mahanadi station on Tuesday. Picture by Passang Yolmo
TT, Siliguri, Jan.10: The engine and a coach of a Darjeeling Himalayan Railway toy train travelling downhill derailed near Mahanadi station in Kurseong subdivision this afternoon, injuring five passengers and the driver.
The train was going from Darjeeling to Siliguri Junction when the engine suddenly jumped the track, followed by the first compartment, around 3.30pm. The loco was pulling three coaches.
There were 40-odd passengers in the three compartments. The train was negotiating a bend near Mahanadi when the accident took place.
"The engine completely went off the track and fell aside. The coach partially went off the track and a portion of it hung over NH55 running parallel to the track. Five passengers, who were in the coach immediately behind the engine, and the driver have suffered injuries. They were administered first aid by the health unit of the railways and later taken to Kurseong subdivisional hospital. All of them are stable and nobody has serious injuries," a DHR official said.
He couldn't say if any tourist was among the injured passengers.
Umashankar Singh Yadav, the divisional railway manager of Katihar division of the Northeast Frontier Railway, said an inquiry would be conducted to find out the cause of the derailment.
"We are yet to know how the derailment took place. The cause of the accident can be ascertained only after an inquiry," the DRM said.
NFR officials and engineers have rushed to the spot. The derailed engine and the coach would be brought back on the track, while the other two coaches are likely to be hauled to a nearby station with another loco, DHR sources said.
The accident occurred after the train had left the Mahanadi station. The spot is 10km downhill from Kurseong and 37km uphill from Siliguri.
On January 26, 2015, a coach of a toy train returning from Jungle Safari (from Gayabari to Siliguri) had gone off the tracks near Chunabhati while going downhill. A woman tourist from Calcutta died after she jumped off the coach.
Again, on January 28, 2015, the loco of a toy train derailed near Tung in the hills. On May 31, 2016, a compartment of a toy train jumped track near Khare Khola in Kurseong.

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