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June 7, 2006

Train kills 16 year-old girl

From: Malawi's Daily Times, Malawi - Jun 7, 2006

BY Anthony Kasunda
04:40:35 - 07 June 2006

A Central East African Railway (Cear) train cruising from Luchenza to Blantyre Tuesday run over a 16 year old deaf and dumb girl at Phalula II Village in Thyolo killing her instantly.

Cear Administrative Officer Daniel Undani confirmed the accident, saying the locomotive driver tried in vain to hoot and brake to avoid hitting Maureen Chikopa.

Undani said Chikopa was walking in the middle of the railway track in the same direction as the train when she met her fate.

“The locomotive driver spotted her from a distance of about 10 metres. He whistled and braked but by the time he stopped, the girl had been run over. She died on the spot,” he said.

He said the matter was reported to Limbe Police Station who visited the scene together with Cear officials.

Undani, who is also the company’s spokesperson, said the train was hauling five wagons of containers carrying sugar for export.

He said Fusilani Jeke, a brother in-law of the deceased told the police and Cear officials that he heard the train hooting from a distance.

“I wish to renew my appeal to the public not to walk along the railway line.

“Importantly, I advise parents, guardians and relations that the mentally and physically challenged should not be left to walk along the railway track on their own. This is very dangerous,” he said.

The deceased hailed from Phalula II Village, T/A Bvumbwe in Thyolo.

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