One dead after express train hits truck and derails in Japan

One dead and at least 34 people hurt, after carriages leave tracks and truck catches fire in collision.

    The express train was derailed after a collision with a truck in Yokohama, Japan's second largest city. [Kyodo/via Reuters]
    The express train was derailed after a collision with a truck in Yokohama, Japan's second largest city. [Kyodo/via Reuters]

    One person was killed and at least 34 people were injured, on Thursday after an express train collided with a truck in Japan's second-largest city of Yokohama, derailing nearly half the train and setting the truck ablaze.

    The accident, which took place on the rail link to the capital, Tokyo, smashed the glass in the driver's compartment and derailed at least the first three carriages of the eight-carriage train, video images showed.

    "The sound of glass breaking was incredible," one passenger told the country’s national broadcaster NHK. "By the time I knew what had happened, the carriage was all smashed up."

    The truck driver, a man in his 60s, was critically injured, the fire department said. Two other people suffered moderate injuries and the remainder were less seriously hurt.

    Jpaan Yokohama
    Rescue officers, police and railway company employees at the scene of a collision between a truck and an express train in Yokohama [Issei Kato/Reuters]

    Earlier, black smoke billowed from parts of the derailed train and the truck, which was crushed between the carriages and a wall. Smashed boxes and what appeared to be oranges littered the track as rescuers combed the site.

    Authorities, including the transport ministry, said they were investigating the cause of the accident but were unable to provide further details. Police confirmed a collision between a vehicle and the train, but declined to elaborate, citing the investigation.

    Some passengers posted video on social media showing people getting off the train after the accident, a twisted electrical pole and train seats covered with broken glass.

    The accident, which stopped traffic on the commuter line run by Keikyu Corp, took place near a station used by more than 19,000 people every day, the train operator said. There was no word on when services might resume.