At least 5 killed as trains collide near Moscow

At least 5 killed as trains collide near Moscow

PanARMENIAN.Net - At least five people have died after a freight train hit a passenger train south-west of the Russian capital Moscow, officials say, according to BBC News.

Several carriages were derailed in the crash, which happened at 12:38 (08:38 GMT) near Bekasovo 1 station, 60km (37 miles) from the capital.

Injured people were reportedly carried from the train as emergency services rushed to the scene.

The passenger train was on its way from Moscow to Chisinau, Moldova.

Russia's interior ministry said at least five people were killed and 15 were injured, although some local reports put the number of injured at as many as 45.

Officials said several carriages on the freight train came off the rails near the town of Naro-Fominsk and hit the passenger train, which was reportedly carrying about 400 people.

Several carriages on the passenger train are said to have then derailed, and some of them overturned. Rescue coordinator Vadim Andronov told Russian news agency Itar-Tass that the death toll was likely to rise.

"One of the carriages of the passenger train was crushed by the freight train wagons," he said. "Rescuers are working to pull out injured people being crushed by the wagon."

A spokesman for the health ministry, Oleg Salagay, said that rescue crews and medical teams were doing everything they could to save lives.

"Medics are working at the scene now, assessing the condition of the injured," he said. "All the necessary medical aid is being provided for them, and this gives us hope for a successful outcome."

According to RIA Novosti, the Moscow Transport Department said a broken rail was the cause of the collision.

Nine emergency teams and three medical helicopters, along with 250 people, were sent to clean and help those injured at the accident site.

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