Train crash in Morocco leaves at least six dead: railway official

Train crash in Morocco leaves at least six dead: railway official
A train crash that took place 12 miles north of the capital Rabat killed six people, including the driver.
2 min read
16 October, 2018
Scene of the rail accident in Bouknadel [Getty]

A train derailed near Morocco's capital on Tuesday, leaving at least six passengers dead and injuring dozens.

"The derailment has killed six people according to the latest count and left 86 injured in serious condition," Mohamed Rabie Khlie, head of the kingdom's national railway company ONCF, told reporters at the scene.

"An investigation has been opened to determine the causes of the accident," said Khlie. 

An AFP photographer said rescue teams were working to retrieve bodies from the overturned train whose carriages had toppled across the tracks.

The crash occurred some 12 miles north of Rabat between the towns of Kenitra and Sale, with local media saying the train driver was among the dead. 

Early reports from local media said the accident was caused by two trains colliding. 

King Mohammed VI said he would pay for the burial costs of the victims and for the treatment of the injured, who were taken to Rabat's military hospital, according to a royal cabinet statement. 

Tuesday's crash is not the first train incident in Morocco this year. In February, a freight and passenger train collided, leaving at least six dead and 14 wounded near Beni Makada district.

In 2014, Abdellah Baha, Morocco's minister of state and deputy secretary-general of the Islamist Justice and Development Party at the time, was killed after struck by a train in the Bouznika neighbourhood of Rabat. 

Rail and automotive safety remain a pressing issue across much of the Middle East and North Africa. 

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