China is home to the world’s longest high-speed railway network which is most extensively used. China’s HSR controls two-thirds of the world’s total high-speed railway networks. This year China started testing a magnetic levitation prototype train that runs at 600 km/h, but later on that. China is followed by Japan and Spain when it comes to HSR line. China didn’t hold any honour of High-Speed Train before 2008. In a decade China is ruling the HSL department. Here are 10 Interesting Facts About China’s High-Speed Trains.
- It’s Fast & Comfortable:
China has the world’s longest mileage of HSR line. The train from Shaoguan, Guangdong province, to the western section of Leiyang, Hunan province which runs with a speed of 316.6 km/h for 47 minutes, is considered the world’s fastest high-speed rail. The longest high-speed rail line from Harbin-Wuhan. The Lanzhou-Xinjiang high-speed rail is considered the lowest line. The Lanzhou-Xinjiang high-speed railway runs through the world’s highest tunnel pass through the Qilian Mountains. It is the world’s highest high-speed rail. These high-speed trains are also quite comfortable as the train’s suspension engineering enables the rider to feel less turning and churning.
2. It’s Affordable:
The high-speed trains not only save your time by cutting more than half time of the normal journey but it also is quite affordable. An economy-class ticket from Changle to Weifang in eastern China’s Shandong Province was priced at 4.5 yuan. A second class seat in the Beijing-Shanghai line will cost you 553 Yuan which is around 80 bucks. The Beijing-Shanghai high-speed railway was the one that turned in the first profit after operating for three years. In 2015, the Beijing-Shanghai HSR was recorded to transport a total of 330 million passengers.
3. It’s Very Popular:
The HSR cuts land travel by 80% so it’s not a surprise that people love it. When it first opened on December 26, 2014, tickets were made available two days prior. And they were sold out in 13 minutes. In 2014, the HSR traffic volumes totalled 970 million with average daily ridership reaching 2.49 million. In 2015, the number was 800 million which was half of the global total riders. In 2016, the number of passengers reached 1.5 billion.
4. China’s HSR Is Said To Be An Economic Equalizer:
Though China is home to more high-speed track than the rest of the world and it is home to a booming economy. The gap between the rich and poor in China is still very much real. As the HSR has linked both of China’s rich and poor sectors connecting the less-developed Southwest with the prosperous cities of China’s east coast. It is said to be an economic equalizer. China’s high-speed rail network is the largest in the world, with over 12,500 miles of track. It is bigger than the rest of the world combined.
5. It Will Give The Traveler A Memorable Journey:
The HSR isn’t only impressive in speed and comfort but also the beautiful scenarios it offers. From China’s megacities to the beautiful limestone landscapes for more than 220 kilometres of the journey, you will many magical places while travelling in one of these trains. The HSR passes through 500 bridges and 238 tunnels. It will take you over the longest bridge in China, the Dongping Waterway Bridge. The bridge on the way to Guangzhou city is 9,230 meters long. The line also passes through the largest tunnel in China as well as the world, the Yanshan Tunnel which stretches for 14 kilometres. It took 3 years to build.
6. They Haven’t Been Really Profitable:
Only 6 lines are turning a profit, the Beijing-Shanghai route being the most profitable. It was a financial gamble as most of the technological innovation are at first. The HSR is reportedly operating at an annual deficit of 2 billion Yuan or about 340 million US Dollars. The China Railway Corporation reportedly owes over 4 trillion Yuan.
7. Other Projects Of The Railways Ministry Of China:
The HSR lines are not the only crazy projects the Chinese Railways Ministry has been involved in. They have previously shown interest in connecting Nepal to China by rail. Their plans involved building a tunnel right through Mt. Everest. They even proposed building a high-speed track to connect China and the US.
8. Liu Zhijun:
Liu Zhijun is the man behind China’s high-speed rail network. He was the Minister of Railways in early 2003. But after Xi Jinping came in power, he drove an anti-corruption initiative in 2013. Liu Zhijun was found guilty of bribery and was sentenced to death. That was later commuted to life imprisonment.
9. There Have Been Accidents:
In 2011, a train was hit by a lightning strike outside the city of Wenzhou. Although the passengers were safe, the train wasn’t in the perfect condition. So as it stopped, it was pushed into the back of it by another high-speed train. As a result, 40 people were dead and 200 injured, four carriages of the train fell into the water below.
10. The Most Beautiful Route:
The Hefei-Fuzhou HSR runs through Anhui, Jiangxi and Fujian provinces with a speed of 300 km/h. It is considered the most scenic route as it crosses eight well-known dramatic spots.