Turkish train accident death toll rises to 24

A Turkish train crash in the country’s northwest killed at least 24 people, Hurriyet newspaper reported, citing government officials.

124 people were receiving treatment at a nearby hospital. 194 people were released after getting outpatient care, Hurriyet said. Health Minister Recep Akdag said 73 were injured, according to state-run Anadolu agency.

The government has imposed a media ban on coverage of the accident, which occurred late on Sunday afernoon. A railways expert who spoke before the ban said that the number of railroad inspectors had been reduced due to privatization of the network, meaning fewer checks of the physical condition of tracks were made.

Five of the train’s six cars derailed in a village in the northwestern province of Tekirdag after ground under the rail collapsed. The Transport Ministry said heavy rain was to blame. The train, with 362 passengers, was traveling from the city of Edirne, near the Greek border, to Istanbul when the accident in a small village occurred.