Train cars slip into flooding river in Sichuan

08:25, August 20, 2010      

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The country is creaking to cope with voracious while widespread summer storms that have left more than 2,000 dead in mudslides in Gansu, Yunnan and Sichuan provinces.

Two carriages of a passenger train fell into a river after floods destroyed a bridge in Guanghan, Sichuan province, August 19, 2010. The accident happened at about 3:20 pm Thursday and the two fallen carriages, part of the K156 train from Xi'an to Kunming, were swept 200 meters downstream. All the passengers were evacuated and no casualties have been reported so far.(Photo/Xinhua)

To add to the tragedy, two passenger trains on Thursday plunged into a flooding river after crossing a water damaged bridge in Sichuan. Luckily, nobody died in the incident.

PLA soldiers and rescue workers found four bodies in Puladi town, Yunnan Province, a day after a wall of mud crashed through the mountain-locked community. Rains expected over the next few days would likely hamper rescue efforts to find 88 people still unaccounted for.

This summer, China has seen the mostly deadly floods, landslides and flood-incurring tragedies. The worst recent landslide happened on August 8 in Zhouqu County, Gansu Province, where more than 1,300 were buried under mud and killed in toppled homes. By Thursday, about 400 people remain missing.

In Guanghan, Sichuan Province, authorities managed to evacuate all passengers from two train cars that dangled for several minutes over a muddy, rushing river before falling into the water.

The train was traveling when it began shaking and then stopped moving, dining car supervisor Wang Baoning told China Central Television. Floodwaters had loosened piers on the Shitingjiang Bridge.

The two cars were hanging over the water in a "V" shape, but were still connected to the adjacent carriages. It took more than 10 minutes to evacuate passengers from the cars, Wang said.

"Less than two minutes later, one carriage fell into the river. About 10 minutes after that, the other one fell in too," he said. There were no fatalities.

The train cars were swept a short distance downstream and were almost completely submerged, trapped against the base of another bridge.The train was traveling from Xi'an in northwestern Shaanxi Province to Kunming in Yunnan Province.

By People's Daily Online


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