At least 30 killed after train derails in southern Pakistan

Dozens injured after several carriages of Hazara Express train derailed in Nawabshah, Sindh province.

At least 30 people have been killed and dozens of others injured after a train derailed in southern Pakistan.

Several carriages of a Hazara Express train derailed on Sunday near Sahara railway station in Nawabshah, Sindh province.

“This is quite a big accident,” Minister of Railways Khawaja Saad Rafique told reporters. Rafique said at least 1,000 passengers were aboard the train when it derailed on a section of track where no faults had been reported.

Senior police officer Abid Baloch said 30 bodies had been recovered and more than 60 people were injured, some critically. He said the death toll could rise as rescue operations continue.


Mohsin Syal, a railway official, earlier told HUM News channel that eight coaches of the Hazara Express, which was travelling from Karachi to Abbottabad, derailed in Nawabshah, about 275km (170 miles) from Karachi, the capital of Sindh province.

Images posted to local media show dozens of people at the site, with some smashing windows to help passengers clamber out of the twisted carriages and at least one coach overturned.

Damaged carriages are pictured following the derailment
Damaged carriages are pictured following the derailment of the passenger train in Nawabshah, Pakistan [AFP]

There were chaotic scenes at the Nawabshah Trauma Centre as ambulances and private cars ferried the injured for treatment.

One man leapt from the back of an ambulance clutching a child, his clothes soaked in blood, while a woman moaned in pain as she was carried in on a stretcher.

“We don’t know what happened, we were just sitting inside,” said one dazed woman.

Police officials inspect the carriages at the accident site following the derailment of a passenger train in Nawabshah on August 6, 2023
Police officials inspect the carriages at the train accident site in Nawabshah [Husnain Ali/AFP]

At the accident site outside Nawabshah, dozens of cars, tractors, rickshaws and motorcycles could be seen parked on a road that runs alongside the track.

Volunteers were wading through a canal that separates the road from the railway line to help, and lifting the injured to get them assistance.

The Hazara Express is a daily passenger train that leaves the port city of Karachi in the south and takes around 33 hours to reach Havelian in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, some 1,600km (994 miles) north.

Accidents and derailments occur frequently on Pakistan’s antiquated railway system. In June 2021, two trains collided near Daharki in Sindh, killing at least 65 people and injuring about 150 others.

In that accident, an express derailed onto the opposite track, and a second passenger train crashed into the wreckage roughly a minute later.

At least 75 passengers burned to death in a fire aboard the Tezgam express train in October 2019, while a two-train collision at Ghotki killed more than 100 people in 2005.

Source: News Agencies