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The Indian railway authorities are investigating an incident where a freight train was able to travel some 80km without a driver, The Independent reported.

The train was pulling 53 wagons full of chip stones when it started rolling downhill along the tracks at Kathua in Jammu, northern India, at one point reaching a top speed of 100km/h before it could be stopped.

The train had stopped for a crew change in Kathua, during which the driver and assistant disembarked, when it began to move downhill.

Official sources told The Hindu that the driver may have forgotten to pull the handbrake before deboarding, though this has not been confirmed by the authorities. The driver has not been identified.

According to the Press Trust of India (PTI), the freight train passed through five stations before it finally came to a halt in Hoshiarpur district in Punjab.

“The train was stopped after a railway official placed wood blocks on the tracks to stop the train,” an official from Indian Railways told PTI.

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