Fire on train in Pakistan kills 10 after gas canister blast

A fire broke out on a train in Pakistan today when a gas canister used to cook food exploded, killing at least 10 people and injuring 15, media reported, citing government and rescue officials.

The fire destroyed three of the train’s carriages near the town of Rahim Yar Khan in the south of Punjab province.

“The deaths of 10 passengers is confirmed but there are fears the toll can go up. Fifteen people are injured,” Baqir Husain, the head of the district rescue service, told Geo television.

He said some of the dead were killed when they jumped from the moving train to escape the flames.

Pakistan’s colonial-era railway network has fallen into disrepair in recent decades due to chronic under-investment and poor maintenance.

Eleven people were killed in an accident in July and four in another one in September.

About 130 people were killed in 2005 when a train rammed into another at a station in Sindh province, and a third train hit the wreckage. 

(Reporting by Sheree Sadar, Syed Raza Hassan; Writing by Robert Birsel; Editing by Christian Schmollinger & Shri Navaratnam)