Deadly fire erupts at Cairos main station

Aftermath of train collision and fire at Ramses Station in Cairo, Egypt (27 February 2019)Image copyright

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The fire reportedly erupted when a train hit one of the station’s platforms

At least 12 people have been killed and many others injured by a large fire at the main railway station in the Egypt’s capital, Cairo.

Security sources said the fire erupted when a train hit one of the platforms at the central Ramses Station.

Dozens of ambulances and fire engines have rushed to the scene.

Videos and photographs posted online showed clouds of black smoke billowing from the station and what appeared to be charred bodies on a platform.

“I was standing on the platform and I saw the train speed into the barrier,” witness Mina Ghaly told Reuters news agency.

“Everyone started running but a lot of people died after the locomotive exploded.”

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A state-run newspaper said the train’s fuel tank exploded after the crash

Egypt’s railway system has a poor safety record, which many people blame on a lack of investment by successive governments and poor management.

In August 2017, 43 people were killed and more than 100 injured when two passenger trains collided outside the Mediterranean port city of Alexandria.

The country’s deadliest rail accident occurred near Cairo in 2002, when a fire ripped through an overcrowded passenger train, killing more than 370 people.

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