A Burnley woman is lucky to be alive after she was a passenger on a fatal train crash in India.
Mrs Pauline Lloyd was enjoying the trip of a lifetime with husband Peter when their dream holiday turned to a nightmare on the mountainous Kalka to Shimla line.
I was catapaulted across the carriage and a seat landed on top of me. The train crashed and the carriage went completely off the rails and was in an embankment.Peter Lloyd
Peter, from Ormskirk, said: “Ever since I have known her, it has been Pauline’s dream to see the Taj Mahal.
“It is one of the Seven Wonders of the World and is such an iconic building with a love story behind it and we promised ourselves we would go and see it one day.”
Little did they realise the horror that lay ahead with the rail crash that occurred on just the second day of their holiday on India’s historic Kalka to Shimla line on September 12th.
Two tourists died and nine others were injured during the incident on the chartered trip of India’s Golden Triangle, which involved a journey on a railway line in the northern state of Himachal Pradesh.
Peter added: “It all happened so quickly. There was a screech and a grind and then the whole train stopped with a shudder.
“It tilted and I was catapaulted across the carriage and a seat landed on top of me. The train crashed and the carriage went completely off the rails and was in an embankment.
“If it hadn’t been for that embankment, the whole train would have gone over and there was a sheer drop just 500 metres down the track.”
The couple, who met through the Burnley Teenage Pen Pals Club, were so taumatised by the accident they decided to come home early.
Peter added: “I would love to make Pauline’s dream of seeing the Taj Mahal come true and once all this is over, hopefully I will take her to India.”