After the serious accident on a railway line in the Ruhr area with one dead and one seriously injured child, the dismay is great. A freight train hit the two boys in Recklinghausen last night. The police investigation into the accident continues. The question to be answered is why the children were walking on the tracks there.
The nine-year-old, seriously injured child is fighting for survival and is being treated in a hospital, as North Rhine-Westphalia's Interior Minister Herbert Reul (CDU) said on Friday night. He had rushed to the scene of the accident in Recklinghausen. Reul spoke of a big "drama when something like this happens to children". "It's awful." It is unclear how the accident could have happened.
According to initial findings by the police, the fatally injured boy is ten years old. There is currently no evidence of other affected children, the police said at night. The fire brigade also used a drone with a thermal imaging camera. Pastors took care of the affected families. A police spokesman said the location was under further forensic investigation.
The accident was reported to the emergency services shortly after 6 p.m. on Thursday. The exact circumstances remained open for the time being. The police held back with further information; it is possible that not all relatives were initially informed. The first media reports said that a group of people had been caught and dragged along several hundred meters.
Numerous emergency services were at the scene of the accident late Thursday evening. The area was cordoned off over a large area, as reported by a dpa reporter. In addition to around two dozen police officers, emergency chaplains were also on duty. Numerous people gathered at the police barriers.
Railway line closed
According to the fire department, 35 firefighters and rescue workers were deployed. "We searched the track bed," said a spokesman for the fire department. Due to the darkness and the extent of the search area, a drone was used. The accident site is near a former freight yard. Recklinghausen is located in the northern Ruhr area.
The railway line between Gladbeck-West and Recklinghausen main station was closed. "We do not yet have a forecast as to when the route will be free again," said a spokeswoman for Deutsche Bahn AG in Berlin. A bus is used as a rail replacement service between the two stations.
According to Deutsche Bahn, there are restrictions on regional transport on the S9, RE2 and RE42 train lines. Long-distance traffic is not affected. According to information from Deutsche Bahn, the accident happened in the Recklinghausen-Ost area.