Chinese firefighters work to rescue survivors after a Chinese high-speed train derailed and two of its carriages fell off a bridge after a lightning strike knocked out power on the line yesterday.Photo: AFP
A Chinese high-speed train derailed yesterday when it was hit by another express, state media said, throwing two carriages off a viaduct and killing at least 32 people.
The derailed train had been crippled by a lightning strike and was stationary when the second one ploughed into it, the reports said.
The D3115 high-speed service from Hangzhou to Wenzhou, in eastern China's Zhejiang province, was rammed from behind by the D301 in Wenzhou's Shuangyu town, China National Radio said.
The first train derailed and two of its carriages fell from an elevated track at around 8:50pm, the official Xinhua news agency reported, citing local firefighting sources. At least 100 people were injured, it said.
The death toll was revised upward from 16 after several passengers succumbed to their injuries in hospital, Xinhua said.
Xinhua said the capacity of each train car was about 100 passengers.
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 China's two most important 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.