Two people have died after a high-speed train derailed at 180mph near Milan today.
Police said the train had come off the rails and overturned near Lodi on the line from Milan to Bologna early this morning.
The leading power car broke off from the rest of the train and smashed into a freight cart on an adjacent track before ploughing into a nearby building, it is believed.
Reports in Italy said two train drivers had been killed, with 28 people injured. A railway official said two people had serious injuries.
The injured people were taken to nearby hospitals, civil protection chief Angelo Borrelli told Italian television.
One of those injured was believed to be a railway cleaner, although his condition was not thought to be life-threatening.
Pictures showed the detached power car on its side and surrounded by debris with emergency workers at the scene before dawn broke this morning.
Further back down the line, the trailing carriages are believed to have continued travelling for a little longer before one of them overturned.
The next carriage left behind was lying at a 45-degree angle, images released by the fire brigade showed.
The other carriages and the driver’s cab at the rear end were also thrown off the running rails, but did not appear badly damaged.
Civil protection chief Borrelli said the train had left Milan at 5.10am and was 25 miles down the high-speed line when it derailed.
It was believed to be heading for Salerno, south of Naples, and was travelling at 180mph when the accident occurred.
There were only 28 passengers on board the early-morning service, according to news agency ANSA.
The line has been closed in both directions, forcing rush-hour trains to take a slower route on the lower-speed Milan-Piacenza line which will take an hour longer.
Police and fire brigade workers were at the scene of the accident with the cause of the crash under investigation today.
The high-speed Milan-Bologna line was opened in 2008.
The service which derailed today was one of Italy’s Frecciarossa or ‘red arrow’ trains, run by the state railway firm Trenitalia.