Train crashes in Qinghai, Heilongjiang leave two dead, dozens injured

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 24 October, 2013, 3:34pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 24 October, 2013, 5:43pm


Two trains collided on a famed railway line to Tibet, killing one person and injuring 52 others, state media reported on Thursday. Separately, another passenger train collided with a coal truck, killing the train driver and injuring 10.

The crash on the Qinghai-Tibet line occurred on Wednesday evening when an empty passenger train ended up on the wrong track and collided with a train at the East Golmud Railway Station in western Qinghai province, according to an announcement on the website of Golmud city’s propaganda department.

State broadcaster CCTV said one person died and 52 were injured. Calls to local authorities and the Qinghai-Tibet Railway Company rang unanswered.

The nearly 2,000-kilometre railway to the Tibetan Autonomous Region is the world’s highest-elevation rail line, and is popular with tourists who previously had to fly or travel by road to reach the remote Himalayan region. It runs from Xining, Qinghai’s provincial capital, through Golmud to the Tibetan capital of Lhasa.

In northeastern China, a passenger train collided with a coal-loaded truck early on Thursday, killing the train driver and injuring 10 people, the official Xinhua news agency said. The incident happened at a railway crossing in Jiamusi city in Heilongjiang province. Xinhua said police had detained the truck driver and the cause was being investigated.

China’s railways have a good reputation for safety overall, although a July 2011 collision between two trains on a high-speed line in eastern China killed 40 people and injured 177.