Derailed train blows up, kills villagers

Last updated 00:44 11/11/2012

Raw footage of the scen where at least 25 died after a cargo train carrying fuel derailed and exploded as villagers tried to collect spilled petrol.

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A train in Myanmar carrying petrol has derailed and burst into flames, killing 25 people and injuring more than 100, most of them villagers trying to collect fuel spilled in the accident, state television said.

MRTV said the fire started after three cars loaded with petrol turned over near a village in Kanbalu township, near the Indian border, just over 500km (300 miles) north of Yangon, Myanmar's biggest city.

State television had said on Friday (local time) that 64 people were injured in an explosion and fire after dozens of people rushed to skim fuel from a derailed tanker train's overturned wagons. Authorities have sinced raised the number of injured to more than 100.

Residents of Chekgyi village were gathered around the accident site trying to collect spilled petrol when they were trapped in the fire. Some 70 per cent of Myanmar's 60 million people live on farms, where fuel is scarce.

An official from Myama Railway Department told Reuters the death toll might rise as some villagers were seriously injured.

Myanmar is among Asia's poorest countries.

Its quasi-civilian government has opened up the country since taking over in March 2011 from the military, which had ruled for nearly 50 years, and pushed through political and economic reforms, leading Western countries to relax sanctions.

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- Reuters

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