Police stand at the scene where five railway workers were killed in Brandizzo, near Turin in northern Italy, Thursday, Aug. 31, 2023, after being hit by a train while carrying out overnight maintenance work. (Alberto Gandolfo/LaPresse via AP)

Speeding train kills 5 railway workers in northern Italy


A speeding work train slammed into a group of workers doing nighttime track maintenance in northern Italy early Thursday, killing five of them, authorities said.

The crash occurred shortly after midnight at the station in Brandizzo, a town in Italy’s Piedmont region. Piedmont Gov. Alberto Cirio provided the death toll and said the crash’s cause was under investigation.

Brandizzo Mayor Paolo Bodoni said there were indications that the crew of the train, which state radio said was believed to be going some 160 kilometres per hour (100 mph), was unaware there were workers on the tracks, reported La Stampa, a newspaper in Piedmont’s main city, Turin.

The train consisted of an engine car used to move empty train cars.

“The first information reaching me refers to a scarcity of communication between the (work) team and who should have signaled the passage of the train, but we need to see what really happened,” Bodoni was quoted as saying. “There is also the question of the train’s speed, which needs to be determined.”

Two workers who avoided being hit were being treated for shock at a hospital, La Stampa said.