JERUSALEM - A fire broke out Tuesday morning on a railway car ferrying passengers in central Israel, injuring up to 40 people, mostly from shock or smoke inhalation, one of them in serious condition, local medics said.
Emergency rescue teams arrived at the scene within minutes and began assisting in the evacuation of passengers, local media reports.
Initial reports showed that most of the passengers escaped the burning railway car prior to the arrival of emergency crews, according to Israeli daily Ha'aretz.
"People were scared, rushed to the front of the train, shouted, broke windows and jumped off the train," a passenger who escaped the train told local news service Ynet.
He said thick smoke filled the train. "There were people who asked if there are other people trapped, but it's most likely that no one was trapped. We didn't hear an explosion, but there was panic," he said.
Railway authority said that the fire started from the train's engine.