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8 killed, 4 injured in Thailand train collision with pickup truck

BANGKOK, Aug. 4 (Xinhua) -- Eight people were killed and four others injured after a freight train collided with a pickup truck that was crossing the railway tracks in eastern Thailand on Friday, authorities said.

The State Railway of Thailand (SRT) reported that the accident occurred at around 2:20 a.m. local time when the cargo train struck the pickup truck carrying workers at the railway crossing in Chachoengsao province.

The train driver sounded a warning whistle three times as it approached the unauthorized crossing, but the truck driver kept crossing the tracks despite noticing the coming train, the SRT said in a statement.

The accident occurred at a level crossing without automatic barriers to prevent collisions as trains approached. The SRT, in the statement, noted that it has attempted to reduce potential accidents by installing warning signs and flashing lights on both sides of the crossing.

According to the SRT, there are currently 1,458 level crossings being used along the national rail system, of which 693 are unauthorized crossing points.