At least six people have been killed after a busy French commuter train came off the rails at a station just south of Paris.
More than 22 people were wounded and the provisional death toll is expected to rise as emergency services work to find those still trapped inside the wreckage at Brétigny-sur-Orge.
The train was en route for Limoges when four carriages came off the tracks around 5pm CET, three fell onto the tracks and one ploughed into the platform. The force of the crash caused the train to split in half, though the cause is not yet known.
President François Hollande arrived on the scene not long after the accident. Making a statement outside the station he said:
“We will definitely find out what happened, and there will be conclusions to draw from this. But first let’s think of the victims, let’s think of the families, and salute all personnel who responded.”
All survivors with serious injuries have been taken to a nearby hospital. French rail company SNCF estimates that 385 passengers were travelling on the rush hour train.
Services along the Paris-Limoges-Toulouse lines have been interrupted to allow time for the investigation.
Rescue efforts continued overnight as emergency services attempt to deal with one of the worst rail disasters in France in the last 25 years.
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