India

Indian children die as train hits school bus

India girl looks out of a window of a passenger train Image copyright Reuters
Image caption India's railway network carries some 23 million passengers every day

Five children have been killed and 13 others injured when a school bus was hit by a train in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, officials say.

The accident happened at an unmanned level crossing in Mau district.

The passenger train rammed into the bus, dragging it down the track. Early reports said 25 people were injured.

There are nearly 15,000 unmanned crossings on Indian railways and hundreds of people are killed on these crossings every year.

Reports say the bus, carrying more than 20 primary school children, was crossing the tracks when a train bound for the holy city of Varanasi hit it early on Thursday.

"It was quite foggy in the morning when the incident took place," Mau's information officer Jitendra Pratap Singh told the AFP news agency.

"Five children have been killed and 13 others, including the driver, are injured. The injured are being treated in the district hospital."

In July at least 18 children were killed along with their driver when a school bus was hit by a train in the state of Telangana.

Safety standards on India's massive state-run railway network, which operates 9,000 passenger trains and carries some 23 million passengers every day, has been an ongoing concern amid a spate of accidents.

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