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Should I use 'haven't happened' or 'didn't happen' in the context?

Yesterday a tragic incident happened near Delhi. At least 50 people died in the rail accident. The government and railway officials took the responsibility of the accident. It is not that incidents like that didn't happen/haven't happened before but the number of deaths never rose to that point.

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  • Both are acceptable but I would choose the Present Perfect. Aug 15 '17 at 9:39
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    I agree however note that "officials took the responsibility of the accident" should actually be "officials took responsibility for the accident" Oct 24 '17 at 13:50
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"Haven't" would be the proper word to use.

It is not that incidents like that haven't happened before but the number of deaths never rose to that point.

However I would recommend rewording it as this:

Incidents like this have happened before, but the number of deaths were never this high.

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  • "the number of deaths were" --> "the number of deaths was" as number is singular. You may also consider using "death toll" instead of "number of deaths".
    – hkBst
    Feb 25 '19 at 14:39

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