: Two persons were killed on the spot when a trial train meant for track checking crashed into a car at an unmanned railway gate on Madurai-Dindigul section at Dharmapuri near Kodai Road railway station on Wednesday.
The deceased were D. Ganesan of Azhagar Nagar and S. Sasikumar of Lourdu Nagar in Madurai city. Both were representatives of a water treatment plant company.
When the car was crossing the track without noticing the approaching train, it was dragged to a distance of half a kilometre at Swathanthirapuram. The train was stopped at curve no.20. Later, the mangled car was separated from the train.
The occupants inside the car were crushed. Fire and rescue services and Railway Protection Force personnel, along with local people, removed the bodies from the car and sent them to the Government Hospital. The train was proceeding to Madurai from Tiruchi.
It was a routine track check-up done by engineers in this section. The engine was attached with three compartments. A special team led by Chief Engineer Ahdul Rahman of Research Design and Scientific Organisation of the Southern Railway, Bangalore, was in the train to check the track, according to railway officials.
Similar accident took place at this point four months ago. Local people said that a room on right side of the railway gate hid the view of drivers. Drivers could see the track clearly only when their vehicle touched the rails. It was one of the reasons for frequent accidents at this spot, they said.
According to Southern Railway officials, senior officers of Madurai Division rushed to the accident spot with a medical relief van. Track was restored at 4.07 p.m.