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Odisha train crash: Balasore hospitals resemble war zone with injured passengers and blood donors

At least 261 people have been killed and over 900 others injured in the crash involving the Bengaluru-Howrah Superfast Express, the Shalimar-Chennai Central Coromandel Express and a goods train.

Odisha train crash: Balasore hospitals resemble war zone with injured passengers and blood donors snt
First Published Jun 3, 2023, 3:19 PM IST

A day after the horrifying train crash in Odisha, the Balasore district hospital and Soro hospital resembled a war zone, with injured passengers lying on stretchers in the hallways and packed rooms with extra beds moved in to treat the unending stream of people. 

Also read: Odisha train crash: From rescue efforts to donating blood, locals turn heroes for saving injured passengers

Several injured passengers, many of whom were from states other than Odisha and had communication issues, were being helped by frazzled medical staff. According to reports, 526 railway accident victims have been rushed to Balasore district hospital so far.

The collision between the Shalimar-Chennai Central Coromandel Express, the Bengaluru-Howrah Superfast Express, and a cargo train has resulted in at least 261 fatalities and left over 900 injured. Although the cause of the disaster is unknown, reports suggested a potential signalling failure.

Also read: Coaches strewn haphazardly, mangled tracks & more: Aerial videos capture horror of Odisha train crash

The injured have been taken urgently to Cuttack's SCB Medical College, Balasore, Soro, Bhadrak, and Jajpur hospitals.

Dr Mrutunjay Mishra, Additional District Medical Officer (ADMO), Balasore district headquarters hospital said, "I am in the profession for many decades, but have never seen such a chaos in my life All of a sudden 251 accident injured persons rushed into our hospital and we were not at all prepared. Our staff worked all through the night and provided first aid to all."

In Cuttack, the SCB Medical College Hospital received 64 patient referrals. There are now 60 patients in beds. After minor surgery, other patients were released.

"We were in fact surprised as a large number of youths made a beeline to donate blood here. We collected around 500 units of blood overnight. Thanks all. It is a lifetime experience. Now things are quite normal," Dr Mishra added.

According to officials, throughout the night, police officers and people volunteered to give blood at Balasore District Hospital and other hospitals. In the middle of the night, more than 2,000 people came at the Balasore Medical College and Hospital to assist the injured. Many of them also gave blood, officials added.

Many of the bodies in the mortuary at the hospital were still unidentified because relatives haven't arrived in the town and numerous train services have been cancelled or delayed as a result of the disaster on a major railway trunk line.

Also read: Coromandel Express derailment shocks the nation; distressing visuals narrate the horror

Many people, many of them from West Bengal, were frantically going to the Balasore hospital and Soro to look for their missing friends and family.

According to Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Saturday, doctors from AIIMS-Bhubaneswar have been sent to Balasore and Cuttack in the state of Odisha to help with the relief efforts at the scene of the train tragedy.

"Two teams of doctors from AIIMS-Bhubaneswar have been dispatched for Balasore and Cuttack to assist in relief operations at the rail accident site in Odisha," Mandaviya said on Twitter.

"We are providing all required help and medical assistance to the victims of the tragic train accident to save precious lives," he added.

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