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June 5, 2014

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Cracks beneath high-speed rail ‘not a concern’

CRACKS beneath an elevated section of the Beijing-Shanghai High-Speed Railway line in Minhang District are not a safety concern, rail officials said yesterday.

Nearby residents were alarmed by the appearance of cracks 30 centimeters wide and 10 meters long at Tianshan Road, around supports holding up the bullet train link to the capital. Ground has also subsided up to a meter over an area of around 100 square meters.

Trains on the high-speed link pass every three minutes.

“The cracks appeared a while ago and the high-speed trains have kept passing over,” one nearby resident said.

However, the authorities insist there is no safety issue as the cracks have developed in waste concrete that was spread on the road surface.

The road beneath and the foundations of the elevated line are unaffected, an official with the Shanghai Railway Bureau said.

“The cracks have no bearing and will not affect operations of the Beijing-Shanghai High-Speed Railway,” the official added.

He said the bureau has been aware of the cracks for some time but had known they were confined to waste concrete.

After exposure to the elements, the concrete had cracked and subsided, said the official.

The 217.6 billion yuan (US$34.8 billion) line has recorded some 100 million passenger trips since it opened in June 2012.

The 1,318 kilometer line has cut the time between Shanghai and Beijing from eight hours or more to around five hours.


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