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Amsterdam train crash: at least 125 injured, 13 seriously

Saturday 21 April 2012

train%20crash The head-on collision left dozens seriously injured. Photo WFA

At least 125 people have been injured, 13 very seriously, in a head-on collision between two trains close to Amsterdam's central station.

Some reports say as many as 136 people may have been hurt when a train from Amsterdam to Uitgeest and another one travelling from Den Helder to Nijmegen collided on a railway bridge by the city's Westerpark in the early evening.

Many of the injured were treated at the scene but dozens of ambulances and a helicopter were used to take the seriously hurt to three hospitals in the Dutch capital. It took several hours before everyone had been helped out of the compartments.

'We think many people were thrown around the train by the crash - against walls, seats and other people,' a police spokesman told city broadcaster AT5. Eyewitnesses told RTL

Same track

It is still unclear how the two trains came to be using the same track. Neither train left the rails and officials have now begun an investigation into the cause of the crash.

Services using the western side of the city's central station have been disrupted and there are no direct rail links from Amsterdam to Schiphol airport.

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

Does anyone needs another proof that the people managing NS and ProRail are incompetent? They keep on screwing up time after time, only this time it was worst than just being terribly late or stopping services because of snow or a mild rain or because there is dog poo on the tracks.

By Ivan | 21 April 2012 11:05 PM

@Ivan: train accidents happen in all countries. I prefer to wait the formal investigation before jumping into any conclusion.

By Andre L. | 22 April 2012 2:12 AM

The schedule of the trains in the west side was already disrupted prior to the accident with most of the trains connecting Rotterdam - Delft - The Haague - Leiden ... Amsterdam cancelled or working only on a small segment.

Most probably the disruption was a cause and not an effect.

By alexandru s | 22 April 2012 3:47 AM

actually yes I do need more proof... Following your logic (after one accident you see its proven that only morons working at prorail)nasa is full of incompetent people, american airlines is full of incompetent people, DHL is full of incompetent people...

Accidents happen, and thank god noone died at this time. Hopefully they going to learn from this mistake.

By jeremy | 22 April 2012 5:09 AM

I am glad to hear here that no casulaties. I do hope those seriously injured make it.

By Webbielady | 22 April 2012 7:31 AM

OMG...what is happening to Europe...inefficiency is peaking..for once if they focus more on work than politics !

By european | 22 April 2012 8:00 AM

Ivan. The reason these managers have to be paid such high salaries and get enormous bonuses each year is because high remuneration must be offered to attract the best talent. That is what we keep getting told, and look what these talented overpaid talents are delivering whilst lining their pockets! ...a multi-tasking housewife does a better job daily, and gets paid nothing.

By jaycee | 22 April 2012 8:04 AM

come on. The same thing has happened in Brussels last year - no one shouts about the Belgium rails incompetence. Netherlands rails are among the busiest in Europe and such occasion is a accident unless you can mention a few for the last 10 years.

By name | 22 April 2012 8:41 AM

Systematic delays are not that serious after all. We just need to be content when we manage our daily commute while preserving our physical integrity...

By Phantom | 22 April 2012 9:27 AM

My first thoughts go out to all those injured, really hope the best for these folks. I always think when I read these types of things how easily it could have been me or someone close.

By Bill | 22 April 2012 9:47 AM

I was in Amsterdam 3 weeks ago it was a sunday when a was travelling to Alkmaar it was a nightmare all the trains where getting cancelled and we ended getting a coach to finish are journey off which took 3hours to get home and the train go that fast i always wonder why you don't have seat belts on because it would save people and childrens lifes (I HOPE THIS HELP)

By J Thompson | 22 April 2012 10:00 AM

I hope everybody's doing okay and the investigation will show what happened exactly.

By J. | 22 April 2012 11:17 AM

I thought things were supposed to be automated to avoid human error. Or is this accident once again because of computer error? No real excuse for this nowadays.

By Michael K | 22 April 2012 12:20 PM

Are you kidding? Incompetent??

Weigh the relatively few incidents on Dutch railways with that of Amtrak in America. Amtrak is a classic example of incompetence (not to mention inefficiency and worn-out passenger cars). Compared to the massive workload of Holland's public transportation (trains & buses)...well, Amtrak simply does not compare as they are a very small piece of the global public transport pie.

By Kevin Lynch | 22 April 2012 2:32 PM

the last serious accident was in 1962? that means 50 years of relative safety -- to me that is a good record; train delays are like airplane delays these happen constantly; and as long we are humans it is possible it is a human mistake -- stop spewing anger at every one and everything; hope everyone will be fine.

By uddie smid | 22 April 2012 3:22 PM

First off all my good vibes for the injuries and families. But yes NS has gotten and is getting worse since the trains went private. Gauging you're own service by another country (ie Amtrak) is not a good idea. Amtrak sucks. Period. But NS should strive to get better then their own mark no just better compared to other countries. I've personally have been on more the 60 delayed trains since November. And I don't mean delays due to construction. I'm mean due to something breaking or a jumper. That's just bad.

By Kendar | 22 April 2012 6:05 PM

For a country where everything runs so smoothly and everyone is so calm and collected the train system leaves a lot to wish for. In fact, when confronted with the NS you suddenly feel like you are in a third world country- when the trains are late, nobody knows when they will come, everything is blamed on people "upstairs" and mischievous computer system. This wasn't coincidence - such an accident was bound to happen.

By Tom | 22 April 2012 8:10 PM

@Kendar: going private has anything to do with that. The problem is that efficient rail service costs, and fares are too low to make up for all costs. Fares should be increased to make service better without subsidies.

By Andre L. | 22 April 2012 9:02 PM

Just wanted to send my best wishes to those involved in the train crash. Hope you all have a speedy recovery. Sending you healing thoughts from Scotland X

By Maria Perera | 23 April 2012 6:06 AM

And this piece of news follows on the heels of the piece that lauds Schiphol for being the best airport in Europe and for winning "particular praise for its public transport links". What an irony!

The head-on collision IS an unfortunate event. One that was preventable. And one that NS should accept the blame for, whether they are competent or not. Come on, this is not the result of a natural occurrence like snow or rain or dog poo by any standard. How did the two trains travelling in opposite directions get onto the same track ?? Is any of the drivers to blame?

My sympathies for the injured and prayers for a quick recovery.

By GGG | 23 April 2012 8:37 AM

The accident is unfortunate, but it happens. What I am surprised about is that all the following train schedules are messed up without any notice. On Sunday I arrived at the central station 40min before my train leaves and I have been running around the station to find the correct platform. Of course I missed the train and thus missed two more connections after the first train. After a crisis, there should be at least some station workers telling people what has happened and what to do.

By Amy | 23 April 2012 10:02 AM

These days, people are very depended on technology, people are loosing their abilities and thinking, they do not think about anything expect what is shown on the monitor, and i do expect more and more such accidents in the future, because technology is far way a head of most of our knowledge.

By K | 23 April 2012 10:06 AM

Andre: the fares have already increased enormously, but the service and/or safety is not getting any better. In fact, it seems to be getting worse. Therefore I cannot follow your logic on this.

By Bill | 23 April 2012 1:17 PM

@Amy: when that happens, the easiest way to get information is via an smartphone with the NS app. It is updated even BEFORE station screens are.

By Andre L. | 23 April 2012 2:27 PM

@Andre: like Bill pointed out... Fares have gone up and services has gone down.. this makes no sense.

By Kendar | 24 April 2012 10:14 PM

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