Though the Qinghai-Tibet Railway is still under construction, the first locomotive in Tibet started running on the "roof of the world" Tuesday.
It was launched at the Amdo County section of the Qinghai-Tibet Railway and will be used to transport construction materials for the giant railway project, said Li Yang, a senior engineer with the China Railway Construction Corporation.
Weighing 86 tons, the locomotive was first dismantled and then assembled in Amdo County after transported into Tibet in four trucks, Li said.
The railway construction site in Amdo County, about 4,704 meters altitude, is known as one of the highest sections in the Qinghai-Tibet Railway under construction.
According to historical records, Tibet imported the first two cars from India in 1928 for the Dalai Lama. They were first dismantled and then carried into Tibet by mule.
This is also the first successful transport of a large-sized machine into Tibet, Li said.
The Qinghai-Tibet Railway originates in Xining, capital of northwest China's Qinghai Province, and ends at Lhasa, capital of Tibet, with a length of 1,956 km. Once completed, it will be the longest plateau railway with the highest elevation in the world.
Construction of the railway began on June 29, 2001, and the entire project is expected to be completed in six years.