A major fire has been reported to be broken out in the Chennai bound Tamil Nadu express, killing atleast 47 people on board the train. The New Delhi – Chennai train has seen the fire in one of the bogies, at Nellore, near Andhra Pradesh.
The death toll has been revised to 47 now, from the earlier estimation of 30 passengers.
Collector of Nellore, Mr. Sridhar, has said that other twenty-six passengers were rescued from the coach S 11 which was caught under fire. However the death toll is expected to rise, even as the rescue operations continue.
It was reported that at around 4:30 AM, as the train was passing through Nellore, some people noticed the fire and informed the authorities in the railways. The officials said that the Nellore station manager noticed the fire in one of the bogies of the train and called for the action.
“There was a short circuit near the toilet and the train was moving at a speed of 110 kms per hour. It was going to Chennai from Delhi. All the passengers were asleep when the fire broke out at 4:30 am. People were not able to come out immediately,” the collector said.
“The fire spread fast and the passengers could not come out through one of the doors because of the fire. So the other edge of the coach was to be used. Some people could come out and others succumbed to death,” he said. The bodies of the dead have been charred out, and hence it would be difficult to trace the identities of the deceased.
Reports have also been saying that around 15 people tried to jump out of the train to save their lives. However some passengers, sleeping the upper berths could have been succumbed to the fire, as the smoke and fire spread rapidly inside the compartment.
Some of the witnesses have indicated that the fire was caused by short circuit near the toilet. However the exact reason for the fire, would be known after a thorough investigation.