Four Poles killed in German rail crossing collision

9th July 2008, Comments 0 comments

Four young polish workers were killed when their car collided with a regional express train on an unmanned crossing near Hamburg

Lindwedel, Germany -- Four young Polish nationals doing casual farm work were killed in Germany Tuesday when a train slammed into their people carrier on a level crossing south of Hamburg.

One Polish woman, 20, survived the collision with serious injuries, German police said. The dead were aged 18 to 24.

Police said the male driver, 19, had just overtaken a tractor and trailer when the car reached the crossing, located near the small town of Lindwedel in the Lueneburg Heath part of Germany.

The crossing had only a traffic sign and no gates to halt traffic. Many secondary rail lines in Germany have neither crossing lights and gates nor lineside fencing.

"The crossing is in open country with the railway track clearly visible for several hundred metres in both directions," said a police spokesman. The regional train, moving at 80 kilometres per hour, dragged the people carrier 400 metres before it could stop.

None of the 40 occupants of the train were hurt, railway company Deutsche Bahn said, but the engine driver was receiving post-traumatic counselling. DPA

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