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A day after two bullet trains ran into each in northern China, firefighters found an unconscious toddler in the wreckage and rushed the child to a hospital. They were able to save the little boy, but the accident raised much controversy and concern about China’s high-speed rail system.

The accident occurred on July 24, 2011, after a train from Hangzhour was struck by lightning and came to a stop. The Hangzhour train was then rear-ended by a Beijing train, and the collision caused 43 deaths and more than 200 injuries in Wenzhou, according to an Associated Press report published in the Daily Press.

Many Chinese citizens are angry over the incident and asking questions about how safe their rail system is. Clean up of the derailed and smashed rail cars, as well as repair of the train tracks, began almost immediately, which has caused some citizens and victims’ family members to suspect a cover-up and demand a more thorough investigation. So far, the authorities have not been able to explain whether the Hangzhour train engineers had known of their vulnerability to the lightning and why the oncoming Beijing train was not able to stop in time.

As a personal injury lawyer, I handle many rail injury cases. I hope the investigation of China’s high-speed rail system is able to prevent such a disaster from taking place again. My condolences go out to any who lost friends or family members in the collision.


About the Editors: The Shapiro, Cooper, Lewis & Appleton personal injury law firm, which has offices in Virginia (VA) and North Carolina (NC), edits the injury law blogs Virginia Beach Injuryboard, Norfolk Injuryboard and Northeast North Carolina Injuryboard as pro bono services.

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