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49 Die in Argentine Train Crash

Train hits station in 6th incident in 15 months
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 22, 2012 12:54 PM CST
49 Die in Argentine Train Crash
Firemen rescue wounded passengers from a commuter train after a collision in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Wednesday Feb. 22, 2012.   (AP Photo/Leonardo Zavattaro,Telam)

(Newser) – A train full of people crashed into a station in Buenos Aires today, injuring at least 550 people and killing 48 adults and one child in Argentina's worst train accident since 1970. The train came into the station too fast and hit the shock-absorbing pad at the end of the platform at about 16mph, the AP reports. That was enough to send the train's cars smashing into each other—one plowed nearly 20 feet into the car in front of it.

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It's the sixth train accident the country has experienced in the past 15 months. Argentina's train system is widely used and heavily subsidized by the government. Union leaders say the state hasn't done enough to maintain or replace its trains, and opposition leader Ricardo Alfonsin tweeted that the accident "exposes the reality of a state incapable of controlling and acting to protect its passengers." The train workers' union chief noted that the train's brakes had been working well the day before, and at previous stops. (Read more train crash stories.)

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