Two trains have collided head-on in Brahmanbaria, Bangladesh, killing at least 16 people and injuring 58 others.

The incident happened in the early hours of 12 November when the Chittagong-bound Udayan Express hit the Dhaka-bound intercity train Turna Nishita.

Local news publication the Daily Star reported that this crash cut off rail communication between Chattogram-Sylhet and Dhaka-Noakhali.

The death toll is expected to rise as the fire service, police, army and border guard are still conducting rescue operations.

Speculation suggests that the collision occurred because signals were violated by one of the trains.

Bangladesh Railways Ministry information officer Shariful Alam said that train services from Dhaka to Chattogram stopped for seven hours and resumed at 10:25am local time after the track was cleared.

Rescue operations began after relief trains from the Akhaura and Laksam railway junctions reached the site.

Three committees have been formed to investigate this incident. Chief mechanical engineer Mizanur Rahman will lead a four-member committee and divisional transport officer for Chattogram Nasir Uddin will lead another four-person team. A third team will be led by the Brahmanbaria additional district magistrate.

Brahmanbaria district administrator Hayat Ud Dowlah Khan said: “The impact of the collision left a couple of compartments of the trains mangled, and rescue workers continued searching to reach passengers trapped inside.”

In July, Akbar Express collided with a stationary freight train at the Walhar Railway Station in Pakistan, killing at least 20 people and injured more than 70 others.

In February, over 20 people were killed and 43 were injured after a train crash at Cairo’s Ramses station in Egypt.

In January, four people were killed and 300 were injured when two trains collided in Pretoria, South Africa.