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» »Unlabelled » Lightning strike contributes to bullet train derailment in China- 32 dead

July 23, 2011SHANGHAI — A Chinese bullet train lost power after being struck by lightning and was hit from behind by another train, knocking two of its carriages off a bridge, killing at least 32 people and injuring 89, state media reported. The official Xinhua News Agency said four cars on the second train also derailed, but it did not say how serious that was. The first train was traveling from the Zhejiang provincial capital of Hangzhou when the accident occurred in Wenzhou city at about 8:30 p.m. (1230 GMT), Xinhua said. It said one carriage from the first train fell about 65 to 100 feet. Pictures on the Internet showed one badly damaged car lying on its side by the bridge and the second car leaning against the bridge after landing on its end. Xinhua quoted an unidentified witness as saying “rescuers have dragged many passengers out of the coach that fell on the ground.” The trains involved are “D” trains, the first generation bullet train with an average speed of about 95 miles per hour and not as fast as the new Beijing-Shanghai line. Xinhua said the train hit by lightning was “D3115.” It said the Ministry of Railways confirmed that it was hit from behind by train “D301. – MSNBC

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