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The derailment of a passenger train in southern Germany has left at least four dead and 30 injured, 15 of them in serious condition.
The accident took place at Friday noon, in the district of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, in Bavaria when the train was heading to Munich. According to a police spokesman, about 60 people were on board the train, including many students.
Stefan Sonntag, a spokesman for the local police headquarters, said that at around 12:15 p.m., the train derailed at Burgrain, 109 kilometers south of Munich, for unknown reasons. Three carriages slid down an embankment in an area north of the Garmisch-Partenkirchen ski resort.
Nearly fifteen people are receiving hospital care, while the first slightly injured have been taken to a nearby building that is also receiving their relatives. Among the passengers were many students who were preparing to enjoy a long weekend of the Pentecost festivities. So far, the authorities in charge have not provided information on the identities of the dead or whether the driver is among the victims. The Public Prosecutor's Office and the Police have launched an investigation into the causes of the accident.
Images released through social networks indicated that at least three carriages of a regional double-decker train were overturned on an embankment next to the tracks. Other photographs show people evacuated on stretchers or standing on the tracks. Rescue teams moved to the scene of the derailment scene after being alerted by neighbors in the area. Soon after, more than 500 people arrived at the scene, helping passengers get out of the train through the windows. The rail line has been shut down and federal highways running near the railroad tracks have been closed in their entirety.
#BREAKING: Several people killed and injured in train derailment in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, police in Germany's Bavaria says; Austrian and German air ambulances dispatched to scene - Merkur newspaper https://t.co/5UcBRm8NZc
"Our deepest condolences go out to the relatives of the fatalities; I wish them much strength," said Bavarian State Parliament Speaker Ilse Aigner, appearing briefly before the press in Munich. Aigner wished the injured a speedy recovery and thanked the many emergency services deployed.
German regional trains have seen an increase in passengers since this Wednesday, June 1, when a nine-euro monthly pass came into force that allows people used to travel across the country; the same measure was taken for the metro and bus. This step was taken intended to reduce dependence on Russian hydrocarbons and boost green transformation.