At least 11 people were dead and 89 injured after two coaches of a bullet train fell off a bridge after derailing in east China’s Zhejiang Province late Saturday, local police, firefighters and hospital sources said.
The train numbered D3115, running from the provincial capital Hangzhou to the southeastern city of Fuzhou, derailed at the section of Shuangyu Town in Wenzhou City of Zhejiang at 8:34 p.m.
The accident occurred after the train was hit by lightning and lost drive, and then rear-ended by another bullet train, the official microblog of Hangzhou TV “News 60 minutes” program quoted a local railway official as saying.
The Ministry of Railways confirmed at 11:20 p.m. that the D301 train from Beijing to Fuzhou rear-ended the D3115 train. The first four coaches of D301 and the 15th and 16th coaches of D3115 went off the line.
A witness said a coach of D3115 plunged onto the ground vertically while another coach was hanging on the bridge with one side seriously deformed.
The bridge is about 20 to 30 meters above the ground.
“Rescuers have dragged many passengers out of the coach falling on the ground,” a witness told Xinhua over phone.
Passengers on the train were crying for help via microblog right after the accident.
A microblogger named “Sam Is Me” wrote on weibo.com that he was stranded in a coach of D3115 on the railway in Wenzhou City. “Please help me!…Help!!! Help!!!” he wrote at 9 p.m. “I’m so scared.”
Witnesses said the scene was crowded by people, which complicated the rescue work.
Right after the accident, Minister of Railways Sheng Guangzu rushed to the ministry’s control and command center in Beijing to guide the rescue, and Hu Yadong, deputy minister of railways, is heading to the scene for rescue work. Xinhua