China Wenzhou 7.23 Fatal Bullet Train Crash, Chinese Netizens Outraged

The high-speed train collision in China on Saturday has shocked the entire world, and the way the country’s railway administrators have handled the aftermath has done nothing to reassure the public of its professionalism.

Saturday’s crash, in which four train carriages fell off a viaduct and two derailed in the eastern province of Zhejiang, has left at least 39 dead and 210 others injured.

China Wenzhou 7.23 Fatal Bullet Train Crash

Nationwide outrage continued Monday in China over the government’s response to a deadly bullet train collision last weekend, even as operations resumed on the affected high-speed rail lines.

A bullet train was struck from behind Saturday night by another train near Wenzhou in eastern Zhejiang province, killing at least 38 people — including two American citizens — and injuring almost 200. The first train was forced to stop on the tracks due to a power outage and the impact caused six cars to derail, including four that fell from an elevated bridge.

China Zhejiang 7.23 Bullet Train D301 Rear-ended D3115

Although Chinese reporters raced to the scene, none of the major state-run newspapers even mentioned the story on their Sunday front pages. A user of Sina Weibo, China’s equivalent of Twitter, first broke the story and increasingly popular social media outlets then provided millions of Chinese with the fastest information and pictures as well as the most poignant and scathing commentaries.

By the time the railway ministry held its first press conference more than 24 hours after the collision, the public had seen not just reports of passengers trapped inside dark trains or images of a mangled car dangling off the bridge — but also bulldozers crushing mangled cars that had fallen to the ground and burying the wreckage on site.

“How can we cover up an accident that the whole world already knew about?” said a defiant railway ministry spokesman Wang Yongping. “They told me they buried the car to facilitate the rescue effort — and I believe this explanation.”

China Train Repaired and Resumed Operation on Monday after 7.23 Rear-ended Accident

Wang was terse when reporters asked him to explain the fact that a toddler girl was being pulled out of the wreckage alive 20 hours after the accident — and long after authorities declared no more signs of life in the trains.
High-speed trains collide in China.

Concerns were also raised as a toddler was found alive after railway authorities announced that there was no vital signs at the accident site and began to tear apart train carriages.

“I was wondering if there is still other lives waiting to be rescued in the ruins…This is a cruel miracle after all,” said Lin Huiqi, a user of the popular Twitter-like microblogging service Weibo.

The death toll from the crash climbed to 39 by late Monday.

A resident surnamed Zhang in the northern municipality of Tianjin told Xinhua that it was ridiculous that he had to buy a new ticket for the same bullet train after losing one, since the system had recorded his information.

You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply