Jakarta // A commuter train slammed into a passenger minibus on Sunday killing at least 18 people and seriously injuring six others at a railroad crossing in Indonesia’s capital.
The bus driver allegedly ignored the warning signals when he crossed the rail tracks and was rammed by the train in western Jakarta, said Wirdhanto, the police chief in the neighbourhood of Tambora who uses only one name.
All those who were killed were travelling in the minibus.
“No one on the train was hurt in the accident but several bus passengers died,” said Eva Chairunisa, a spokeswoman for train operator Kereta Commuter Line.
The shattered bus was seen lying on the tracks after it was dragged by the train up to a nearby platform, about 300 meters from the collision site.
Thirteen minibus passengers died instantly, while another died on the way to a hospital, Wirdhanto said.
The minibus driver and his assistant were among four people who died at three Jakarta hospitals, while six others were hospitalised with serious injuries, said Musyafak, who heads Jakarta police’s medical and health division.
He said that no one travelling in the train’s eight cars were hurt, and that all rail signals were working at the time of the crash. The train was headed to Jakarta’s neighbouring town of Bogor with about 400 passengers.
Transport accidents are common in Jakarta, where safety standards are poor. Roads are heavily congested and buses and trains are often old and badly maintained.
In 2013 seven people were killed and scores more injured when a commuter train collided with a fuel tanker at a level crossing in Jakarta and burst into flames.
* Associated Press and Agence France-Presse