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Driver Dead, 35 Injured in Swiss Train Crash
Two trains collided head-on Monday in western Switzerland, killing one of the drivers and injuring 35 passengers, at least five of them seriously, police said.
A reporter who arrived at the scene saw the wreckage of the train near the small station on the edge of the village of some 1,200 people.
The force of the impact was clear from the mangled engines of the trains, which were wrapped together.
In details, one train had been bound for Lausanne, some 38 kilometers to the south, while the other was traveling north from the same city, officials said.
A total of 46 passengers had been on board, all of them Swiss, police said.
Frantic efforts continued into early Tuesday to free one of the drivers, with whom there had been no contact since the crash.
But by 1:30 am they had managed to extract his body from the cockpit of his train, using special equipment to cut through the wreckage.
Rescue teams deployed a heavy-lifting crane to remove the rest of the wreckage and clear the line, working under arc-lights set up to enable the operations to continue through the night.
Monday's collision on what is one of the most popular and safest rail networks in Europe was the latest in a series of rail accidents on the continent.
It comes in the wake of Wednesday's tragedy in the Spanish city of Santiago de Compostela which killed 79; and a crash near Paris two weeks ago that claimed seven lives.
Police experts, along with members of the Swiss accident investigation authority SESA, were on site to launch a probe into the causes of the crash, officials said.
The accident echoed one in January at Neuhausen-am-Rheinfall in northern Switzerland, where two regional trains collided near a station.
Twenty-five people were slightly injured in that crash, caused by a failure to respect a signal.
Monday's crash was Switzerland's most serious since one in Zurich in 2003 which injured 45 people.
Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team
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