Sheikhupura, Pakistan: 14 killed in collision with auto-rickshaw

9 Jul

At least 14 people, including two children, were killed and two others injured on July 6th, 2013 when a train collided with an overloaded motorcycle rickshaw (carrying 16 persons at the time of the accident) on an unmanned railway crossing near Khanpur village in Sheikhupura district.

The rickshaw had become stuck on the level crossing and rolled over on to its side as the train arrived at the level crossing

Pakistan’s Railways Minister Mr K S Rafique ordered an immediate inquiry into the accident with a requirement that they make recommendations to prevent a recurrence of collisions on level crossings. The investigation board is led by Pakistan Railways Chief Operating Superintendent, a senior police officer and the District Coordination Officer. An initial report within 24 hours was required.

Mr Rafique warned that if any railway employee is shown to be negligent, prosecution will ensue. Mr Rafique also announced that PKR 0.5 million compensation for each of those killed.

Significantly, Mr Rafique acknowledged that both the federal and provincial governments were at fault
as the risk arising at unmanned level crossings has not been well-managed, notwithstanding the apparent negligence of the rickshaw driver.

Currently more than 2,000 of Pakistan’s official total of 3,783 are unmanned. All of the unmanned crossings are to be surveyed and proposals developed for their elimination and if that is not possible, their upgrading to an active status.

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