(Lüscherz) Two regional trains derailed almost simultaneously on Friday in northwestern Switzerland, just a few dozen kilometers from each other, injuring more than 12, including at least one seriously, police said Canton of Bern.

The first train derailed around 4:30 p.m. (10:30 a.m. EST) between Lüscherz and Biel, and the second about 20 minutes later around Büren zum Hof, a spokeswoman told AFP. of the police, Flurina Schenk.

In Büren zum Hof, which is about twenty kilometers north of Bern, nine adults and three children were injured, Magdalena Rast, the spokesperson for the cantonal police, told Swiss public television. A person was seriously affected, the cantonal police said on Twitter shortly before.

Television images show wagons lying on their left side and the driver’s cabin embedded in one of the metal poles supporting the catenaries.

The number of passengers on these two trains was not immediately available.

The police were unable to explain the causes of these successive derailments.

Stormy winds, which swept through Switzerland on Friday, are likely to be behind the Büren zum Hof ​​derailment, according to the RBS (Regionalverkehr Bern-Solothurn) railway company.

At the precise moment of the derailment, a measuring station in the nearby town of Koppigen recorded a gust of 136 km/h, Meteonews revealed.

A depression centered on the south of England on Friday generated strong winds over part of Europe including Switzerland, underlines MeteoSwiss, referring to storm Mathis.

The strongest gusts were generally accompanied by showers and thunderstorms.

MeteoSwiss had warned in the morning against winds of 80 to 110 km / h in the plain and 100 to 140 km / h in the mountains.

In the first derailment, near Biel, “the rear part of the train overturned on the right side”, explained the police spokeswoman. The accident occurred on the line that runs along Lake Biel, operated by the company Aare Seeland mobil (ASM).

Wagons of the regional train lay on their sides, below the embankment where the rails are installed.

The box, around which railway employees were busy wearing fluorescent orange work clothes, did not seem to have been much deformed by the shock.

Switzerland is renowned for its very dense rail network, with frequent services and a close network.

Enthusiasts from all over the world also go to this country to take certain lines that cross exceptional landscapes in the Alps or board trains that have no equivalent elsewhere in the world and manage to climb very steep hills.

Although train accidents are not exceptional in Switzerland, they generally do not cause a large number of victims.

Thus, in 2021, a total of eight people died (excluding suicides) and 47 were seriously injured in accidents involving trains, according to figures from the Federal Statistical Office.

“Overall, the number of rail accident victims has declined markedly in recent decades—despite an increase in transportation benefits,” the agency notes.

The deadliest disaster in Swiss rail history occurred on June 14, 1891.

A bridge of the Jura-Simplon railways, built by Gustave Eiffel, had collapsed under the weight of a crowded train arriving from Basel. The accident killed 73 people and injured more than 150.

And on September 12, 1982, in Pfäffikon near Zurich, a train had hit a bus which was crossing on a level crossing whose barrier had not lowered.

Thirty-nine people died in this collision and only two bus passengers survived the disaster.