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Train disasters

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Godhra train burning

The Godhra train burning was an incident that occurred on the morning of 27 February 2002, in which 59 people died in a fire inside the Sabarmati Express train near the Godhra railway station in the Indian state of Gujarat. The victims included Hindu pilgrims who were returning from the city of Ayodhya after a religious ceremony at the disputed Babri Masjid site. The commission set up by the Government of Gujarat to investigate the train burning spent 6 years going over the details of the case, and concluded that the fire was arson committed by a mob of 1,000 to 2,000 people. A commission appointed by the central government, whose appointment was later held to be unconstitutional, stated that the fire had been an accident. A court convicted 31 Muslims for the incident and the conspiracy for the crime. The conviction was later upheld by the Gujarat High Court, although the actual causes of the fire have yet to be proven conclusively.

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Lac-Mégantic rail disaster

The Lac-Mégantic rail disaster occurred in the town of Lac-Mégantic, in the Eastern Townships region of Quebec, Canada, at approximately 01:15 EDT, on July 6, 2013, when an unattended 74-car freight train carrying Bakken Formation crude oil rolled down a 1.2% grade from Nantes and derailed downtown, resulting in the fire and explosion of multiple tank cars. Forty-two people were confirmed dead, with five more missing and presumed dead. More than 30 buildings in the town's centre, roughly half of the downtown area, were destroyed, and all but three of the thirty-nine remaining downtown buildings had to be demolished due to petroleum contamination of the townsite. Initial newspaper reports described a 1-kilometre (0.6 mi) blast radius.

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CSX 8888 incident

The CSX 8888 incident, also known as the Crazy Eights incident, was an incident involving a CSX Transportation freight train in the U.S. state of Ohio on May 15, 2001. Locomotive #8888, an EMD SD40-2, was pulling a train of 47 cars including some loaded with hazardous chemicals, and ran uncontrolled for two hours at up to 51 miles per hour (82 km/h). It was finally halted by a railroad crew in a second locomotive, which caught the runaway and coupled to the rear car.

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Moorgate tube crash

The Moorgate tube crash occurred on 28 February 1975 at 8:46 am on the London Underground's Northern City Line; 43 people died and 74 were injured after a train failed to stop at the line's southern terminus, Moorgate station, and crashed into its end wall. It is considered the worst peacetime accident on the London Underground. No fault was found with the train, and the inquiry by the Department of the Environment concluded that the accident was caused by the actions of Leslie Newson, the 56-year-old driver.

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Ladbroke Grove rail crash

The Ladbroke Grove rail crash was a rail accident which occurred on 5 October 1999 at Ladbroke Grove in London, United Kingdom. With 31 people killed and more than 258 injured, this remains one of the worst rail accidents in Britain. This was the second major accident on the Great Western Main Line in just over two years, the first being the Southall rail crash of September 1997, a few miles west of this accident. Both crashes would have been prevented by an operational automatic train protection (ATP) system, wider fitting of which had been rejected on cost grounds. This severely damaged public confidence in the management and regulation of safety of Britain's privatised railway system.

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Tay Bridge disaster

The Tay Bridge disaster occurred during a violent storm on Sunday 28 December 1879 when the first Tay Rail Bridge collapsed while a train was passing over it from Wormit to Dundee, killing all aboard. The bridge—designed by Sir Thomas Bouch—used lattice girders supported by iron piers, with cast iron columns and wrought iron cross-bracing. The piers were narrower and their cross-bracing was less extensive and robust than on previous similar designs by Bouch.

Disasters, Transportation

Kaprun disaster

The Kaprun disaster was a fire that occurred in an ascending train in the tunnel of the Gletscherbahn Kaprun 2 funicular in Kaprun, Austria, on 11 November 2000. The disaster claimed the lives of 155 people. There were 12 survivors from the burning ascending train. Most of the victims were skiers on their way to the Kitzsteinhorn Glacier.

Wars and warfare, Transportation

Grdelica train bombing

The Grdelica train bombing occurred on 12 April 1999, when two missiles fired by NATO aircraft hit a passenger train while it was passing across a railway bridge over the Južna Morava river at Grdelica gorge, some 300 kilometres (190 mi) south of Belgrade in Serbia. As a result, at least 20 civilian passengers were killed or declared missing. This resulted as the deadliest rail disaster in Serbian history. Over a decade after the attack, Serbian sources reported that a large number of passengers were classified as "missing", without giving a finalized number of victims.

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Montparnasse derailment

The Montparnasse derailment occurred at 16:00 on 22 October 1895 when the Granville–Paris Express overran the buffer stop at its Gare Montparnasse terminus. With the train several minutes late and the driver trying to make up for lost time, it entered the station too fast and the train air brake failed to stop it. After running through the buffer stop, the train crossed the station concourse and crashed through the station wall; the locomotive fell onto the Place de Rennes below, where it stood on its nose. A woman in the street below was killed by falling masonry. The engineer was fined 50 francs and one of the guards 25 francs.

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2004 Sri Lanka tsunami train wreck

The 2004 Sri Lanka tsunami-rail disaster is the largest single rail disaster in world history by death toll, with probably 1,700 fatalities or more. It occurred when a crowded passenger train was destroyed on a coastal railway in Sri Lanka by a tsunami which followed the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. The tsunami subsequently caused over 30,000 reported deaths and billions of rupees in property damage in the coastal areas of Sri Lanka.

Music, Transportation

Wreck of the Old 97

The Wreck of the Old 97 was an American rail disaster involving the Southern Railway mail train, officially known as the Fast Mail, while en route from Monroe, Virginia, to Spencer, North Carolina, on September 27, 1903. Due to excessive speed in an attempt to maintain schedule, the train derailed at the Stillhouse Trestle near Danville, Virginia, where it careered off the side of the bridge, killing eleven on-board personnel and injuring seven others. The wreck inspired a famous railroad ballad, which was the focus of a convoluted copyright lawsuit but became seminal in the genre of country music.

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Big Bayou Canot rail accident

The Big Bayou Canot rail accident was the derailing of an Amtrak train on the CSXT Big Bayou Canot bridge in southwestern Alabama, United States, on September 22, 1993. It was caused by displacement of a span and deformation of the rails when a tow of heavy barges had collided with the bridge eight minutes earlier. Forty-seven were killed and 103 were injured. To date, it is both the deadliest train wreck in Amtrak's history and the worst rail disaster in the United States since the 1958 Newark Bay, New Jersey rail accident in which 48 lives were lost.

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Tangiwai disaster

The Tangiwai disaster occurred at 22:21 on 24 December 1953 when the Whangaehu River bridge collapsed beneath Wellington-to-Auckland express passenger train № 626 at Tangiwai, in the central North Island of New Zealand. The locomotive and first six carriages derailed into the river, killing 151 people. The subsequent Board of Inquiry found that the accident was caused by the collapse of the tephra dam holding back nearby Mount Ruapehu's crater lake, creating a large lahar in the Whangaehu River, which destroyed one of the bridge piers at Tangiwai only minutes before the train reached the bridge. The disaster remains New Zealand's worst rail accident.

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San Bernardino train disaster

The San Bernardino train disaster, sometimes known as the Duffy Street incident, was a combination of two separate but related incidents that occurred in San Bernardino, California, United States: a runaway train derailment on May 12, 1989; and the subsequent failure on May 25, 1989, of the Calnev Pipeline, a petroleum pipeline adjacent to the tracks which was damaged by earth-moving equipment during the crash cleanup.

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Wenzhou train collision

On 23 July 2011, two high-speed trains travelling on the Yongtaiwen railway line collided on a viaduct in the suburbs of Wenzhou, Zhejiang province. The two trains derailed each other, and four cars fell off the viaduct. 40 people were killed, at least 192 were injured, 12 of which were severe injuries. Officials responded to the accident by hastily concluding rescue operations and ordering the burial of the derailed cars. These actions elicited strong criticism from Chinese media and online communities. In response, the government issued directives to restrict media coverage, which was met with limited compliance, even on state-owned networks.