Youngsters had been amongst these killed within the prepare crash, the mayor mentioned.

The site where a train plunged off an overpass that partly collapsed on Monday night in Mexico City.
Credit score…Hector Vivas/Getty Pictures

MEXICO CITY — A metro overpass collapsed late Monday in Mexico Metropolis, sending the automobiles of a prepare full of passengers plunging to the bottom and killing not less than 23 folks, together with kids, the town’s mayor mentioned.

Emergency employees scrambled to a scene the place tilted prepare automobiles lay amid tangled wires and twisted steel, pulling dozens of individuals from the wreckage and transporting 70 folks to hospitals with accidents.

Dramatic video of the incident confirmed the overpass all of a sudden collapsing in a bathe of sparks, sending up a cloud of particles as one of many prepare automobiles smashed right into a car on the street under.

Within the chaotic aftermath, determined family members flocked to the scene for information of their family members, whereas others scoured metropolis hospitals in hopes of discovering their relations.

“I’m on the lookout for my son,” the mom of a 13-year-old boy informed a neighborhood tv station via tears. “He was on the subway — I can’t discover him.”

The crash occurred at 10:25 p.m. on one of many metropolis’s latest stretches of monitor, Line 12, which was inaugurated in 2012. Native residents had expressed concern concerning the structural integrity of the overpass, together with cracks within the concrete, after a robust earthquake devastated components of the town in September 2017.

Hernando Manon, 42, who lives within the space, was on his manner house from work when he noticed sparks gentle up the evening sky and the prepare come crashing down.

He mentioned that he was certainly one of many individuals who had seen cracks within the concrete after the earthquake. Though the cracks appeared to have been eliminated, he mentioned, he didn’t know the extent of any repairs.

Native officers didn’t deal with particular issues within the quick aftermath of Monday’s accident, however Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum mentioned that upkeep was carried out on the prepare line day by day. The system as an entire has been tormented by issues in recent times.

“At this second, we will’t speculate about what occurred,” Ms. Sheinbaum told reporters early Tuesday. “There must be a deep investigation, and whoever is accountable must be held accountable.”

Within the meantime, she mentioned, Line 12 would stay closed because the authorities examine the reason for the accident. Mexico Metropolis Metro advised people to keep away from the realm.

Ms. Sheinbaum didn’t rule out the potential of additional incidents on the broken prepare line, and mentioned that the avenue that runs under the road can be shut down throughout an investigation.

Marcelo Ebrard, Mexico’s overseas minister, known as the crash a “horrible tragedy” in a Twitter post late Monday. “After all, the causes needs to be investigated and the obligations for it outlined.”

Mr. Ebard was mayor of Mexico Metropolis from 2006 to 2012, when the brand new line was constructed, and accusations of poor building and planning emerged virtually as quickly because it was opened. The road was closed briefly in 2013 for repairs.

A whole lot of cops and firefighters cordoned off the scene on Tuesday morning as family members and buddies of individuals believed to have been on the prepare gathered exterior the safety perimeter to hunt data.

Mayor Sheinbaum mentioned that not less than one particular person trapped in a automotive within the mountain of rubble had been pulled out alive and brought to the hospital.

Mexican rescue personnel removing a victim’s body from the train wreck.
Credit score…Marco Ugarte/Related Press

Hours after the collapse, rescue employees had been nonetheless scrambling early Tuesday to free folks trapped contained in the tangle of crushed steel and collapsed concrete, which was all that also stood on the web site the place the prepare overpass had crumbled.

Dozens searched rigorously among the many particles, some utilizing steel ladders to climb via the home windows of the prepare automobiles to drag folks to security. Quite a lot of folks had been taken from the scene on stretchers because the police, emergency employees and a few volunteers labored via the evening. The rescues had been halted briefly round midnight because the prepare dangled precariously, however had been restarted after it was secured.

A tearful mom, recognized solely as Elísabet, informed the tv channel Azteca Noticias that she was looking for her 13 year-old son, who had been out with others within the metropolis heart and was on the metro, about to come back house. “I spoke 5 minutes in the past with him,” she mentioned between sobs. “He mentioned that he was about to reach.” She begged the authorities to “give me again my son.”

After the crash, dozens of family members crowded across the crash web site, voicing their frustration to native reporters about not having the ability to get nearer and assist get their family members out of the particles.

Instantly after the crash, a video confirmed members of the group, many sporting masks due to the coronavirus pandemic, aiding the injured. Three males could possibly be seen carrying one other younger man away from the positioning of the wreckage. One other man hobbled from the scene, bracing himself on one other man’s arm.

Others handed out water and child wipes to assist clear the faces of those that had rushed into assist.

Shortly earlier than 2 a.m., the Brigada de Rescate Topos Tlaltelolco said that not less than 5 folks remained trapped and that search and rescue employees had been utilizing a 200-ton crane to help their efforts. However a short while later, authorities’s civil safety authorities indicated that there were no longer people trapped in the rubble.

Pictures from the scene confirmed the crane lifting one of many subway automobiles barely from the collapsed roadway under to permit emergency employees to proceed looking for anybody who was injured or trapped.

Talking from the scene, Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum mentioned that one particular person had been pulled from a automotive trapped on the roadway under the collapsed rail line. At the least 70 injured folks had been taken to the hospital.

Concerns about the structural integrity of the stretch of tracks where Monday’s accident occurred had been raised since a strong earthquake struck Mexico in 2017.
Credit score…Pedro Pardo/Agence France-Presse — Getty Pictures

The subway system in Mexico Metropolis, the nation’s sprawling capital, handles greater than 4 million passengers a day and is the second-largest within the Americas, after New York Metropolis’s. And when it was inaugurated in 1969, adorned with Aztec artifacts and Maya-style friezes, it was the satisfaction of a nation.

However in recent times it has turn into an emblem of city decay.

There was concern over the integrity of the elevated tracks and assist columns on the stretch of tracks the place Monday’s accident occurred after a robust earthquake hit Mexico in September 2017.

The elevated infrastructure on the subway line — often known as Line 12, or the Golden Line — was broken, El Common newspaper reported.

Later that month, some native residents informed El Common that they feared that the broken infrastructure may collapse. The newspaper reported on the time {that a} column between the Olivos and Nopalera stations had suffered structural injury. It additionally reported that engineers had been to conduct an ultrasound survey of the reinforcing metal in 300 columns alongside Line 12’s elevated portion.

It was not instantly clear what work had been achieved to handle the security issues. However there was a broad decline of the system in recent times.

The Golden Line, the place Monday’s accident occurred, was opened in 2012 and is the most recent within the system. But from the outset, it has been beset by issues.

Trains operating over elevated components of the monitor needed to decelerate for concern they could derail. And simply 17 months after the $2 billion line was inaugurated, the town suspended service on a big a part of it.

Service was later restored, however issues concerning the system as an entire have grown.

Final month, one of many capital’s 12 subway strains shut down after a monitor hearth. And in January, a hearth ripped via the metro’s downtown headquarters, killing a police officer and sending 30 others to hospital with smoke inhalation. Six subway strains had been quickly knocked offline.

Opposition events blamed a scarcity of upkeep for the inferno, and the conservative Nationwide Motion Social gathering filed a legal criticism in opposition to Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum and the top of the Mexico Metropolis subway.

In March 2020, one particular person was killed and not less than 41 others had been injured when two subway trains collided in Mexico Metropolis. Ms. Sheinbaum mentioned on the time that one of many trains had apparently backed into the opposite. Video of the wreckage confirmed that the drive of the collision had left one of many trains caught on prime of the opposite, in keeping with Reuters.

The subsequent month on the Misterios station, a railway coupler — a mechanism used for becoming a member of prepare automobiles — fractured en path to its vacation spot. Though that incident resulted in no deaths, employees requested for extra security measures, El Common reported.

One other derailment in 2018 despatched shock waves via a suburb of Mexico Metropolis. A prepare carrying cargo ran off the tracks, and certainly one of its automobiles crashed right into a home, killing 5 folks.

The newest critical accident occurred in 2015, when a collision between two trains left 12 folks useless. In 1975, one other prepare collision on the Viaducto station killed 31 folks and left greater than 70 injured, in keeping with El Common.

After the 2015 accident, the German-based firm TÜV Rheinland was employed to look at the circumstances that may have induced it and counsel enhancements to know-how. The corporate completed its work in 2017 and was not concerned in trying into the energy of present buildings, a spokesman mentioned.

“TÜV Rheinland supervised the event of enchancment measures to treatment technical issues in methods engineering,” mentioned the spokesman, Jörg Meyer. “Our actions at the moment weren’t associated to bridge infrastructure.”

Melissa Eddy contributed reporting from Berlin.

An eight-second video that captured the second of collapse confirmed average visitors flowing on both facet of the suspended bridge when all of a sudden it cracked and buckled in a burst of concrete and sparks, falling between the lanes of automobiles.

Another video taken a couple of minutes later confirmed a handful of cops and volunteers utilizing building ladders arrange in opposition to the facet of the prepare to assist folks down — together with a number of who had been hobbling and almost unable to stroll.

Emergency workers moving an injured person on a stretcher.
Credit score…Pedro Pardo/Agence France-Presse — Getty Pictures

The crash was so sudden, witnesses mentioned, that there was hardly time to scream.

One second, passengers had been zipping alongside an elevated stretch of monitor on Mexico Metropolis’s Golden Line, after which the bottom fell out from beneath them.

“It occurred actually all of a sudden,” one lady informed the Mexican newspaper El Common. “I fell into everybody else. Everybody fell into everybody.”

Surveillance footage confirmed the second the overpass collapsed straight onto the road, sending the prepare plunging to the bottom in a cloud of mud and particles.

“I heard an explosion — we thought it was a stationary fuel tank,” one resident, Eduardo García, informed Univision Noticias, a Spanish-language media outlet, including that he had been enjoying soccer on the time. Mr. García mentioned he had instantly begun operating, earlier than seeing a number of ambulances.

Enrique Bonilla, 57, who was on the prepare on the time of the crash, informed the tv community Televisa that he had felt a sudden motion and heard a loud sound because the bridge was collapsing. He mentioned that individuals had fallen on prime of each other, and that he had vomited. Mr. Bonilla was in a position to seize onto a pole and, afterward, to flee via a damaged window, he mentioned, sitting on the bottom after the crash.

It was throughout in seconds, Mr. Bonilla added. “Thank god I got here out alive.”

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