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South Africa Train Crash Injures 300
At least 300 people have been injured in a collision between two passenger trains in South Africa during the peak morning commute.
Dozens of school children were among those injured in the crash, which left the driver of one of the engines needing to be rescued from his cab.
The accident happened just before 8am when a train collided with a stationary locomotive near Attridgeville, a suburb west of Pretoria.
"Many are walking wounded and already left. There are 20 people in serious condition and one, the driver of the second train, is in a critical condition," local emergency services spokesman Johan Pieterse said.
"Both of the trains were full of commuters and between them were lots of school children on the way to school. We counted about 50 plus children," he added.
At least three people were said to be in a "critical" condition according to Chris Botha, a spokesman for emergency services provider Netcare.
At least one person was airlifted to the nearby Milpark Hospital, others were taken by ambulance and many were treated at the scene.
Rescue workers struggled to cut away the tangled wreckage of the trains to free the passengers. One of the train drivers was freed from the carriage where he was trapped for two hours. He was among those critically injured.
The trains were on the same line toward the capital Pretoria when one train hit the other from behind.
The cause of the accident is unknown.
The trains were operated by Metrorail, the country's rail system in cities.
It is just the latest serious rail accident to hit South Africa's urban rail network.
In 2011, 857 commuters were injured in Johannesburg's Soweto township when a passenger train smashed into a stationary train during the peak rush hour period.
The Passenger Rail Agency of South, has itself described its passengers as "travelling like cattle."
Over 90 percent of commuter trains in South Africa date back to more than fifty years, the most recent dating from 1986.
The network is currently undergoing a major revamp to upgrade its fleet, spending 123 billion rand ($14 billion, 10 billion euros) over 20 years.