Cow flees slaughterhouse, stops express train in Germany

An escaped cow delayed over a dozen trains in southwest Germany when it refused to budge from the train tracks. The cow had fled from a nearby slaughterhouse, according to the police.

A cow caused hours of delays on a busy railway route in Germany and prompted a major police response early on Tuesday.

Cars and Transportation | 21.02.2017

The animal was set to be slaughtered in the southwest town of Bühl when it escaped and found its way to the nearby train tracks. The route is a part of a vital railway that links the German city of Karlsruhe with the Swiss city of Basel.

An inter-city express (ICE) train driver was first to report the cow at around 5 am local time. The man halted the train to avoid hitting the animal.

German police shared a pre-dawn photo on Twitter, claiming it showed the cow on the tracks.

The police dispatched several patrols to the scene, but they were unable to drive the animal away.

"The cow positioned itself on the track and did not move," according to a spokesman.

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Eventually, a hunter was called in to shoot the animal, but not before 14 trains were delayed and three redirected during the two-hour disruption.

Over 250 trains, including key cargo transports, travel along the route every day.

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The fundamental restructuring of Deutsche Bahn started two decades ago and is to continue under Lutz. Since 1994, the Deutsche Bundesbahn (German Federal Railway), which used to burn through billions each year, has transformed into a global mobility enterprise. The DB corporation now has 300,000 employees in over 140 countries.

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dj/rc (dpa, AFP)