Speed May Be to Blame for China Rail Crash

Railfanning.org News Wire

ZIBO, China — Excessive speed could be to blame for a Monday (April 28) train crash that killed at least 70 people and sent hundreds more to the hospital.

According to a Xinhua news report, an express train traveling to the east China city of Qingdao from Beijing  was traveling 131 kph (81 mph) in an 80 kph (50 mph) zone. The train derailed and crashed into a second train, which was traveling from Yantai in the Shandong province to the Jiangsu province city of Xuzhou, authorities said.

“So far, the accident site has been cleaned up and the stranded passengers evacuated,” Xinhua quoted Wang Jun, head of the State Administration of Work Safety, as saying. “All the injured have been hospitalized and the dead have been transferred to local funeral homes.”

The wreck is the worst in China since 1997. During the 1997 wreck in the central province of Hunan, more than 100 people were killed, according to media reports.

The Qingdao-Jinan Railway was closed for roughly 20 hours after the derailment.