NEW DELHI– Three selfie-lover teenagers were killed when they were hit and crushed by a train in Panipat on Wednesday, leading selfie-related death tolls to rise in India which researchers say has the worst record for such deaths.
A police officer told AFP that a fourth youth managed to jump to safety before the accident in Panipat city in the northern state of Haryana.
“The victims were busy taking selfies and when they saw a train approaching they jumped to a second track without realising another train was coming on that,” M. S. Dabas told AFP.
“One of them saved his life as he jumped on the other side of the track.”
The group had come to Panipat to attend a wedding. Two of those killed were 19 years old and the third was 18.
Experts warn that youngsters obsessed with social media are going to extreme lengths in order to post selfies seen as daring and risky.
A study last year by researchers from the All Indian Institute of Medical Sciences said 259 people across the world had died while taking selfies between 2011 and 2017.
The highest number of incidents and selfie deaths were reported in India followed by Russia, United States, and Pakistan, the study said.
In 2017, three students were killed on a railway track in southern Karnataka state, while a man died in Odisha after an elephant wrapped its trunk around the man and crushed him to death as he tried to take a selfie with the animal.
In 2018, Indian Railways Minister Piyush Goyal issued warning to people via twitter not to risk their lives for the sake of taking pictures.
SOURCE: NEWS AGENCIES