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Egypt train crash kills four people near Cairo

Recurrent train crashes have prompted calls for transport minister to quit and revamp of dilapidated infrastructure
A derailed train at the scene of a railroad accident in the city of Qalyub in Qalyub province, in Egypt's Nile delta region north of Cairo on 7 March 2023 (AFP)
The train overshot on entering the station in the city of Qalyub, north of Cairo, on 7 March 2023 (AFP)

At least four people are dead and over 20 others injured after a train crashed north of Cairo on Tuesday, in the third such incident in Egypt in five years.

The passenger train derailed after it overshot while entering the station in Qalyub, a city on the Nile delta, near the capital. 

It went through a stop signal and continued into the buffers at the end of the tracks, according to Egypt’s national rail authority. 

Footage shared online showed a derailed coach, which was partially crumbled, being airlifted by a crane. 

The families of those killed would receive compensation worth 100,000 Egyptian pounds ($3,200), said Egypt's minister for social solidarity. Those injured will receive a similar figure. 

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Egypt has had a long history of railway crashes and disasters, linked to ageing infrastructure and dilapidated train lines. 

In March 2021 over 20 people were killed and nearly 200 injured after two passenger trains collided in the southern Sohag governorate. 

The government fired the country’s rail authority chief following the incident, but faced a backlash over Transport Minister Kamel el-Wazir’s refusal to resign. 

In March 2020 at least 13 people were injured when two passenger trains collided in Cairo, triggering a brief suspension of rail services nationwide. At the time, rail managers blamed the crash on signals not functioning in bad weather.

In February 2019, a train derailed and caught fire at Cairo's main railway station, killing more than 20 people and prompting the transport minister to resign. 

Wazir has previously pledged to set up an automated network and construct a high speed network, which will include a $23bn new rail line that goes through Egypt’s new administrative capital.  

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