The Eschede derailment occurred on 3 June 1998, near the village of Eschede in the Celle district of Lower Saxony, Germany, when a high-speed train derailed and crashed into a road bridge. 101 people died and around 100 were injured. It remains the worst rail disaster in the history of the Federal Republic of Germany and the worst high-speed-rail disaster worldwide. The cause was a single fatigue crack in one wheel which, when it failed, caused the train to derail at a set of points.
Intercity-Express trainset 51 was travelling as ICE 884 "Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen" on the Munich to Hamburg route; the train was scheduled to stop at Augsburg, Nürnberg, Würzburg, Fulda, Kassel, Göttingen, and Hanover before reaching Hamburg. After stopping in Hanover at 10:30, the train continued its journey northwards. About 130 kilometres and forty minutes away from Hamburg and six kilometres south of central Eschede, near Celle, the steel tyre on a wheel on the third axle of the first car broke, peeled away from the wheel, and punctured the floor of the car, where it remained embedded.
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