Saturday, 28 November 2009

Train bombings

The authorities in Russia are investigating whether last night’s derailment of the Moscow-St Petersburg express was caused by a bomb on the track. At least 25 people were killed, and another 19 are reported missing.

In 2007, an explosion on the same route derailed a train and injured 27 people. Two suspects were arrested. While in 2003 a suicide bomb on a commuter train in Stavropol Krai in southern Russia killed more than 40 people.

Russia’s worst rail disaster, though, came when the trans-Siberian gas pipeline ruptured near the city of Ufa in 1989. As two trains passed close to the leak, they set off a terrible explosion which produced a wasteland three miles long, and killed up to 800 passengers.

The worst terrorist attacks on trains were the Madrid bombings of 2004, in which 191 people died, and the Mumbai blasts of 2006 which cost 209 lives. (see my blog of Nov 26)

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