Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Train Passengers Must be Assured of their Safety!

It is becoming increasingly unsafe to travel by train these days. The frequeency at which train accidents happen in the country's railway network, leaving many dead and injured in the process, is just too alarming.
The latest accident to happen occured on Sunday in which a passenger train from Dar es salaam to Mwanza and kigoma hit a stationary goods train that had stopped on the same track due to some mechanical problem near Mpwapwa. Several passengers were killed while many more were injured.
This country has seen worse in train accidents. Memories linger of two such major accidents in which almost 400 passengers killed and hundreds others injured some of them maimed for life.
The earlier one happened in the 1980s at Salanda hills Singida Region while the other took place at Igandu Hill near Dodoma Municipality in June 2002 due to break failure.
The government put the figure of the dead from the Igandu hill accident at 281. There have been other minor accidents, involving mostly goods trains that had derailed, the most fatl one happening near Tabora in 2007 in which 71 people were injured, 15 of them seriously.
Police in the region then arrested 9 people, including 6 locomotive drivers, after being suspected of sabotaging a section of the central railway line in which the train was derailed.
In all the cases mentioned, the government formed probe teams to look into the possible causes. Terms of reference had included possible sabotage, vandalism, safety laxities on the part of railway authorities and dilapidated network.
All the above points to the fact that there was, and still there is, glaring mismanagement and operational incapability on the part of the managers of the country's railway system. In sharp contrast with the past when railway transport was the safest, it is no longer so.
There is complete lack of maintanance of the wagons and the railway system is dilapidated. Lack of safety measures along the railway lines is right, left and centre criminal. The system is in shambles. The government must do something fast to check such deterioration and assure passengers of their safety(From The Daily News).

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This blog gives information about accidents-vehicles,motorcycles,bycycles etc,also highlights the suffering of those involved in various accidents. It gives counselling to the accidents victims and information as to where they can get assistance be it legal or humanitarian.
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