Given my recent trip to Mumbai – in which I took a trip on a very packed train – this story caught my attention:
MUMBAI (AFP) – The death toll on Mumbai’s railways averages a dozen a day — more than a whole year on New York’s subway system, which has an average annual accidental death rate of eight.
In the first four months of this year, 1,146 commuters died and 1,395 were injured, railway police said.
Many of the victims had been hanging on the side of the packed trains, unable even to wedge themselves inside, and fell to their deaths after losing their grip, they said.
Last year’s total toll was 3,997 deaths and 4,307 injuries.
“We could enforce a limit on the number of people on a train but people still need to go to work. They’ll sit on the tracks and stop trains from moving,” Central Railways chief security commissioner BS Sidhu said.
A dozen a day? That is stunning to me. Now I know what my friend Kapil meant, when he asked if I wanted to ride the train there. His question was “Are you feeling adventurous?”