In the Ruhr area city of Recklinghausen, a freight train hit two children. One boy died, another boy was seriously injured, but his life is no longer in danger. It is still unclear how the serious accident could have happened.

In a serious accident on a railway line in Recklinghausen (NRW), two boys were hit by a freight train. A 10-year-old died. His 9-year-old friend was seriously injured. According to a police spokesman, he is “no longer in acute danger to life”. The boys had been dragged along by the train for several hundred yards.

North Rhine-Westphalia’s Interior Minister Herbert Reul (CDU) rushed to the scene of the accident on Friday night. He spoke of a big “drama when something like this happens to children”. “It’s terrible.” It is unclear how the accident could have happened and why the boys were on the tracks. The police investigation into the accident continues.

There is no evidence of other affected children, the police said on Friday night. The fire brigade also used a drone with a thermal imaging camera. Pastors took care of the affected families.

The accident was reported to emergency services shortly after 6 p.m. The police held back with further information; it is possible that not all relatives were initially informed. Numerous emergency services were at the scene of the accident late Thursday evening. The area was cordoned off over a large area, as reported by a dpa reporter. Numerous people gathered at the police barriers.

According to the fire department, 35 firefighters and rescue workers were deployed. “We searched the track bed,” said a spokesman for the fire department. Due to the darkness and the extent of the search area, a drone was used. According to information from Deutsche Bahn, the accident happened in the Recklinghausen-Ost area. The accident site is near a former freight yard. Recklinghausen is located in the northern Ruhr area.