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Page last updated at 19:57 GMT, Wednesday, 16 July 2008 20:57 UK

Dozens die in Egypt train crash

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Emergency crews at the scene of the accident

At least 37 people have been killed in a collision between a train and several vehicles at a level crossing in northern Egypt, police have said.

Some 40 more people were injured in the crash near Marsa Matruh, 430km (270 miles) north-west of the capital Cairo.

A truck failed to stop at the crossing and pushed several waiting vehicles into the path of the oncoming train, security officials said.

Road accidents are frequent in Egypt killing about 6,000 people every year.

Many of the crashes are due to reckless driving, poor road and vehicle maintenance and lack of enforcement of traffic regulations, correspondents say.

Investigation launched

In Wednesday's accident, two train carriages overturned on top of two cars, while another two carriages were derailed by the force of the impact, state media reported.

It is not yet known whether there were any foreign tourists among the victims.

Dozens of emergency vehicles were sent to the scene, and an investigation into the crash has been launched.

Heavy equipment was being brought in to try to lift the mangled carriages, an official told the AFP news agency. Many bodies were thought to be still trapped inside, he said.

An witness said the level crossing was just over the brow of a hill and could not be seen by approaching traffic until the last minute.


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