Ghana's new train collides with lorry in test run

Ghana's new train collides with lorry in test run
The train is one of the two diesel-powered trains which Ghana bought from Poland (file photo)

BBC | A train that Ghana recently acquired from Poland has collided with a lorry during a test run in the Eastern Region, the authorities say.

It rammed into the abandoned vehicle that was on the tracks of the Tema-Mpakadan railway line on Thursday, causing minor damage to the train's cabin area, the railway ministry said.

The train driver, railway inspectors and passengers all escaped unhurt.

Police say they have arrested the driver of the abandoned lorry.

There was no-one in the lorry when it was hit and the location where the it was left was not designated as an authorised level crossing, the ministry of railways development said in a statement.

"Despite the immediate application of the emergency braking system, the train was unable to come to a complete stop before colliding with the vehicle," it added.

Railways Minister John Peter Amewu described the incident on Facebook as "unfortunate, irresponsible, and unpatriotic!".

Preliminary investigation showed that the suspected driver left the truck unattended on the railway line, leading to a collision with the train, the Ghana Police Service said in a brief statement.

The authorities said the investigation into the incident would continue, and assured the safe operation of the railway system.

Ghana bought two diesel-powered trains from Poland to boost the railway transport system.

The first new Diesel Multiple Unit (DMU) train arrived in the country two weeks ago and it was designated to operate on the new 100km (60-mile) Tema-Mpakadan line.

The second one will be shipped in May, and it is expected to arrive in August, railway agency chief Yaw Osuwu told local media.

The first train with 12 modern passenger coaches was conducting a test run on the line, which is a new route aimed at improving public transport opening up Ghana's eastern corridor.

The line is part of a planned 1,000 km project which is expected to connect Ghana and Burkina Faso through the port of Tema, local media reported.

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