(Voorschoten) A train carrying passengers hit a crane early Tuesday before derailing in the Netherlands, near The Hague, killing at least one worker, and around 30 injured in the country’s worst rail accident in decades. years.

The double-decker train from Leiden to The Hague, with around 50 passengers on board, derailed from the track near the village of Voorschoten at around 3:30 a.m. (0130 GMT), rescue services and train operators said.

The violence of the accident left a wagon lying in a meadow and a second on its side on an embankment, while two cars remained on the tracks, AFP journalists noted.

A freight train also slammed into the crane, in another collision, with no casualties, train operators said.

Dutch King Willem-Alexander visited the scene of the tragedy, described as a “terrible accident” by Prime Minister Mark Rutte.

“First we heard an explosion, then another much more intense one,” Chris van Engelenburg, a 36-year-old resident, told AFP.

“Then we heard people screaming,” he added.

An employee of construction company BAM was killed, the company said, as quoted by Dutch media.

Nineteen people were transported to various hospitals in the area while 11 people were treated in nearby homes, the emergency services said.

No trains will run from Leiden to The Hague for the rest of Tuesday and traffic will remain halted in the area for several days, train operator NS said. But the Thalys connection from Amsterdam to Paris via Brussels was not affected.

A criminal investigation has been opened, Dutch police and prosecutors said. Rail authorities and the country’s safety board are also investigating the cause of the crash.

It’s a “black day for Dutch railways,” said John Voppen, boss of rail network company ProRail, who said maintenance work was underway on the railway near Voorschoten.

“Two of the four tracks were out of order because of this, while trains could run on the other two tracks,” she said.

“The damage is enormous,” said NS director Wouter Koolmees. “We don’t know (why the train hit the crane). The investigation must be carried out properly,” he told a press conference.

Further on the railway, the wreckage of the crane testified to the violence of the drama.

Wearing an orange vest, the king addressed rescue workers and walked along the tracks at the scene of the accident, about eight kilometers north of The Hague, AFP journalists found.

The train’s carriages were badly damaged, with windows shattered and a fire breaking out in one of them after the accident, according to local media.

“We heard a very loud bang and the house started shaking heavily,” “it was mostly very scary,” said 45-year-old resident Jaron Ooms.

The worst train disaster dates back to January 8, 1962 when two passenger trains collided in thick fog at Harmelen, near the central city of Utrecht, killing 93 and injuring 52.

In 2016, a train hit a construction crane in the center of the country, killing one and injuring six. In 2012, a train accident near Amsterdam also left one dead and 117 injured.

Tuesday’s accident comes after the almost simultaneous derailments on Friday in Switzerland, during a strong storm, of two regional trains (15 injured).

In Greece on February 28, a train disaster killed 57 people, deeply shocking the entire country.