x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 22 October 2017

Egypt train drivers and assistants detained after fatal Alexandria crash

At least 41 people were killed and 133 injured, the health ministry said, when two trains collided in the coastal city on Friday

A train passes by the site of the fatal collision in Khorshid, on the outskirts of Alexandria, on August 12, 2017. Khaled Desouki / AFP
A train passes by the site of the fatal collision in Khorshid, on the outskirts of Alexandria, on August 12, 2017. Khaled Desouki / AFP

An Egyptian prosecutor has ordered the detention of the train drivers and their assistants involved in last week's fatal collision in Alexandria , according to state news agency Mena.

At least 41 people were killed and 133 injured, the health ministry said, when two trains collided in the coastal city on Friday, the latest in a string of crashes have inflamed public anger over an antiquated transport network.

Egyptians have long complained that successive governments failed to enforce basic safeguards for railways.

A witness said the trains rose into the air "forming a pyramid" as they slammed into each other just outside a suburban station in the Mediterranean port city.

The prosecutor ordered two train drivers and two assistants be held for 15 days and released several other railway employees, Mena said. Blood and urine samples were taken from one driver to check for drug use.

President Abdel Fatah El Sisi has ordered an inquiry into the crash.