updated 9/29/2011 12:11:19 PM ET 2011-09-29T16:11:19

Two commuter trains collided outside Caracas on Thursday, killing at least one person and injuring about 30, officials said.

Three trains were involved in the accident, two of which collided, Transportation Minister Francisco Garces said on state television. The crash occurred in a tunnel on a train line between Caracas and the suburbs of Los Valles del Tuy.

A train engineer died from his injuries, Deputy Justice Minister Nestor Reverol said.

Garces had said earlier that the engineer who had been at the front of one train was in "delicate" condition.

Most of the injuries to passengers, however, were believed to be minor, Garces said.

One train suddenly braked due to a apparent malfunction, and another train crashed into it from the rear, Garces said. The front train derailed when struck, and another train coming in the opposition direction braked to avoid a collision, he said.

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Many of the injured were being brought first to the Charallave train station near the tunnel. A helicopter landed to help ferry the injured to treatment.

Ambulances and fire trucks were parked nearby, while trucks drove atop the tracks to help evacuate people from the trains.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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