The accident spot. Pic/AFP
For several survivors of the Odisha train accident who arrived in Tamil Nadu on Sunday in a special train, the trauma they endured is unlikely to dissipate soon and it was more than shock and disbelief for them.
A woman, who is a native of Kerala said she had only seen accidents on televisions and when she experienced it herself, she was terrified. "The bed sheets given to passengers were used to carry the injured and it turned red with blood; a dreadful scene," she told reporters here.
The general compartment was overpacked well beyond its capacity, she said recalling what she said she saw.
PM Modi flags off nine Vande Bharat trains
Six killed, four injured in road accidents in Rajasthan
PM Modi to flag off nine Vande Bharat Express trains in 11 states today
Train coach catches fire near Valsad station in Gujarat, rescue ops launched
Pramila Mallik elected unopposed as first woman Speaker of Odisha assembly
Wearied by the tragedy and the long journey as well, a man said seeing blood, severed limbs and bodies of men and women lying scattered was tormenting.
Another passenger who was injured said: "I was asleep in compartment S-1. All of a sudden I heard a bang and before I could realise what happened I almost fainted after something like a rod hit the side of my rib cage." He was taken away in a wheelchair by healthcare workers to the Rajiv Gandhi Government Medical College Hospital.
Kanagaraj, an Army man from Salem in Tamil Nadu, who was on the Chennai bound train for vacation said bogies got separated, some fell on the side and some others landed on other coaches due to the sudden slamming of brakes by the driver.
He said when the bogey shook, some people fell on his arm one after the other, in the commotion. He saved as many people as possible, in particular children. He said he advised people to not rush towards one side as the already tilted coach might fall on one side.
The 137 passengers of the train accident in Odisha who arrived here by a special train from Bhadrak looked exhausted and the gory accident added to the agony.
Murugan said he and others could feel the bogey slanting rapidly and falling on one side and many people were injured severely. "It was pitch dark, cries of people could be heard, many lay dead," he said recounting scary moments.
Pranav Vignesh said he was on the side upper berth. "Several people sustained severe injuries, broken window glass pieces pierced the back of people," he said adding they somehow managed to get out of the ill-fated train through the window.
Suganya Radhakrishnan said passengers experienced sudden terrible shake and her spouse on the upper berth fell down and sustained injury.
"As we got down from our coach and moved forward looking for help, what we saw was indescribable; we just could not stand the trauma and cries and only then we realised the magnitude of the accident," the woman from a village in southern Theni district said.