November 29, 2005

Congo train crash kills at least 60: officials

KINSHASA (Reuters) - At least 60 people were killed when
they were swept off the roof of a train into the river below as
the train crossed a bridge in eastern Democratic Republic of
Congo, local officials said on Tuesday.

"It seems there are over 60 dead in this accident," Koloso
Sumaili, governor of Maniema province, told Reuters in Kinshasa
after speaking with local officials in his region.

He said the accident happened on Monday, around 200 km (125
miles) south of the town of Kindu, as the train traveled toward
the southern town of Lubumbashi.

"Trains that travel on that line have lots of people and
goods on the roof. When the train was crossing over a bridge,
the beams supporting the bridge swept people and goods off the
train and into the river below," he said.

Congo's infrastructure is in tatters after years of decay
followed by two wars over the last decade.

Most transport is now by air or river as roads and railways
across Africa's third-largest country have crumbled or been
swallowed up by the thick jungle.