Two people have been killed and up to 50 injured after two trains smashed into each other in the Czech Republic.
A high-speed train travelling from Munich and a local passenger train were involved in a head-on collision shortly after 8am in the rural southwest.
Firefighters were seen searching for a missing passenger at the front end of one train carriage that had been obliterated, with its wheels mangled and cabin crushed.
Dozens of ambulances and police cars were parked up in the grassy fields beside the tracks and rescue helicopters were seen buzzing overhead close to the Czech village of Milavce around 10 miles from the German border.
Czech transport minister Karel Havlicek said human error likely caused the crash. He said the driver of the high-speed train had failed to stop at a designated location.
Firefighters inspect the mangled end of a train carriage. Its wheels are badly bent out of shape and the carriage appears to have been obliterated by the crash which occurred at 8am Wednesday outside the village of Milavce close to the Czech Republic’s German border
The crushed end of one of the trains is examined by firefighters scouring the wreckage
Police and firefighters at the scene of the head-on collision between the two trains this morning
The crash took place outside the Czech village of Milavce around 10 miles from the German border
‘The situation is serious,’ said Havlicek, who was heading to the site.
Seven people were in critical condition and rescue teams, including ambulances from neighbouring Germany, have been rushing people to hospitals in nearby cities, including Pilsen and Prague.
Fire brigade chief Jaroslav Hrdlicka told local media the trains were involved in a head-on collision and that they were still searching for one missing person.
‘There was a head-on collision between two trains. The rescue was done by simple means, we did not have to use a hydraulic rescue device. However, we are trying to secure access to the demolished cabin of the train,’ the fireman said.
The local village provided some of the injured people with shelter in the community centre while the more gravely wounded were rushed to larger hospitals.
Two train crashes in the Czech Republic in July last year left three people dead and dozens injured.
Rescuers at the scene of the crash outside the village of Milavce this morning
Firefighters are seen around the mangled end of one of the train carriages involved in the collision in the town of Milavce in the southwest of the Czech Republic
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