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Pretoria train crash death toll rises to 3

Two trains carrying about 800 passengers collided at the Walkerton train station in Mountainview on Tuesday morning.

The scene of the train crash at Mountainview station in Pretoria on 8 January 2019. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - While paramedics work to free those trapped in locomotives following a train crash in Pretoria, the confirmed death toll has risen to three.

Two trains carrying about 800 passengers collided at the Walkerton train station in Mountainview on Tuesday morning.

Paramedics say about 300 patients have been transported to various hospitals in the area.

“We are currently busy with the extraction of the trapped people after receiving a confirmation from Metrorail that overheard powerlines, as well as the ground powerlines, are off,” says Charles Mabaso of Tshwane emergency service.

At the same time, the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) says there are still several people trapped underneath the train.

It’s still unclear what caused the two trains to collide, but police are investigating the matter.

Gauteng Metrorail spokesperson Lillian Mofokeng says: “We will be instituting an investigation so that we can understand the full details that led to the accident, to make sure that we manage the area. We have decided as the operator to close the line.”

Police say charges of culpable homicide could be opened, if the outcome of the inquest suggests that someone was responsible for the fatal crash.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)

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