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Fatal German train crash kills two near Osnabrück

Two people have been killed and 20 others injured near the German city of Osnabrück after a passenger train hit a slurry truck, police say. The accident happened on a level crossing just before the town of Ibbenbüren.

A train hit a truck on a road crossing in western Germany on Saturday, killing two people and injuring at least 20 others, police said, describing three of those hurt as in serious condition.

Police spokesman Jochen Laschke said a regional train coming from the city of Osnabrück and heading to the small town of Ibbenbüren, a rural area about 440 kilometers (265 miles) west of Berlin, hit a farm truck with a tank full of manure. He said rescue workers took survivors suffering shock to a nearby community center.

"The train was very crowded," Laschke said. "We got an emergency call at 11:31 a.m. today and rescue team, firefighters and psychologists from all over the region were activated to help."

According to the first investigators on the scene, the truck got stuck when trying to drive over the train tracks, Laschke said. The train crashed into the truck and came to a stop 200 meters down the track.

Left in pieces

TV video footage showed part of the truck lying on one the side of the track, the manure tank on the other and the windows and metal parts of the train's engine torn away by the impact. Laschke said the truck's survived the crash unscathed.

Separately, a freight train derailed near the city of Kaiserslautern, closing down rail services between Frankfurt and Paris, a spokesman for the national rail operator,

Deutsche Bahn

, said on Saturday. That accident injured no one, though several carriages of the freight train left the tracks. Travelers faced cancellations and delays, with many having to use rail replacement buses.

The private company Westfalenbahn operated the train in Ibbenbüren, not Deutsche Bahn.

mkg/sms (Reuters, AFP, dpa, AP)

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