Yomiuri News:

【北京=関泰晴】新華社電などによると、中国東部・浙江省温州で23日午後8時半(日本時間同9時半)頃、北京発福建省福州行きの高速鉄道列車が、止まっていた浙江省杭州発温州行きの別の高速鉄道列車に追突、温州行き列車の2両が橋から川へ落ちた。

新華社は、この事故で11人が死亡、89人が病院に運ばれたと伝えた。上海の日本総領事館は日本人が事故に巻き込まれていないかどうか調べている。突貫工事が続いた中国の高速鉄道は、安全性をめぐって不安の声が出ていた。

中国中央テレビによると、事故当時に付近で落雷があり、信号システムが故障した温州行き列車が線路上で止まっていたという。追突された列車は満員で、1300~1400人の乗客がいたとの情報もある。落下した車両に乗客が閉じ込められている模様。現場で消防当局の救急隊員が乗客の救出にあたっている。

(2011年7月24日01時33分  読売新聞)

ChannelNewsAsia:

BEIJING: A Chinese high-speed train was derailed Saturday when it was hit from behind by another express, state media reports said, throwing two carriages off a viaduct and killing at least 11 people.

The derailed train had been crippled by a lightning strike and was stopped when the second one ploughed into it, the reports said, in an accident likely to raise new questions about the safety of a rapid rail expansion.

The D3115 high-speed train, from Hangzhou to Wenzhou in eastern China’s Zhejiang province, was rammed from behind by the D301 express in its destination city, China National Radio said.

The first train derailed and two of its carriages fell from an elevated track at around 8:30pm (1230 GMT), the official Xinhua news agency reported, citing local fire fighting sources. At least 89 people were injured, it said.

Photos posted on Chinese websites and microblogs showed a long rail carriage standing vertically, with one end leaning on the viaduct and the other resting on the ground at least 10 metres (33 feet) below.

A second carriage also was lying fully on the ground below the track, having apparently fallen completely off, with rescue personnel swarming over it.

They also showed mangled metal sections of one carriage and people being carried away from the scene, although it was not clear whether those victims were injured or dead.

Xinhua said the capacity of each car on the train was about 100 passengers.

China National Radio quoted an unnamed Shanghai Railway Bureau official who had gone to the scene as saying the D3115 was halted by a lightning strike.

The accident occurred less than a month after China inaugurated with great fanfare a new flagship $33 billion line from Beijing to Shanghai that halves the rail journey time between the two Chinese cities to five hours.

It was opened on the eve of July 1 celebrations to mark the 90th birthday of China’s Communist Party and authorities touted it as yet another symbol of the country’s growing advancement.

However, the new Beijing-Shanghai line has suffered problems with delays caused by power outages, sparking a slew of criticism online and in Chinese media.

China has poured money into a massive rail expansion but the huge investments have spurred allegations of corruption, and raised concerns over costs and whether corners were being cut on rail safety.

China’s state auditor has said construction companies and individuals last year siphoned off 187 million yuan ($29 million) from the Beijing-Shanghai project.

The revelation followed the February sacking of former railways minister Liu Zhijun, who allegedly took more than 800 million yuan in kickbacks over several years on contracts linked to China’s high-speed network.

The official China Daily said Monday the power supply incident on the Beijing-Shanghai line had raised fresh concerns over the safety of the landmark link, which opened a year ahead of schedule.

Similar trains are used on the line where the accident occurred, which was operating before the new Beijing-Shanghai link.

In April 2008, 72 people were killed and more than 400 injured when one train derailed and another collided with it in the eastern province of Shandong.

The accident raised transport safety concerns for the Beijing Olympics just months later.

- AFP/ir/ac

Regardless of language, the news has spread like hellfire for the last evening. The accident occurred at 2030h Beijing Time on the Hangzhou-Fuzhou-Shenzhen Passenger Dedicated Line (PDL), part of the China High Speed Rail (HSR) network. Trains involved are CRH2-139E formation of 16-car travelling as D301 which rear-ended D3115, a CRH1 of unknown formation.

The CRH1 is a Bombardier venture with CSR China Qingdao Sifang Locomotive and Rolling Stock Company. They have a maximum speed of 220 to 250 km/h depending on batch.

CRH2E is a spin-off from the CRH2A, originally built based on the Shinkansen E2-1000 currently serving the JR East Tohoku Shinkansen (東北新幹線). Using technology provided from Japan through the original CRH2A trains, CSR Qingdao Sifang built the subsequent series of CRH2, and claim that they ‘import technology, digest and revolutionize’. Kawasaki Heavy Industries (which made the CRH2A) and CSR Qingdao Sifang China has since ceased collaboration on high speed rail development, however..

stocks such as the C151A (SMRT: KSF) supplied overseas are not affected. Questions about to be raised on quality and safety?

Interestingly to share, the Site Admin has foreseen the China HSR network to meet with a major incident this year, due to the rushed projects, power and signalling system failures that occur at a increasing rate. Tragically true, this accident has claimed lives, one accident which no one expected nor wish to happen. The Site Admin prays for the victims involved, and hopes for positive future development in China about the correct attitude and direction to head in HSR development. Rome is not built in a day, HSR cannot be a rushed (and corrupt) project.