Large high-speed railway opens

Updated: 2012-07-02 07:48

(China Daily)

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Large high-speed railway opens

The Hanyi Railway, a section of a high-speed rail corridor between the eastern metropolis of Shanghai and southwestern city of Chengdu, opened on Sunday.

The 293-km Hanyi Railway links Wuhan and Yichang, two large cities in Central China's Hubei province.

The railway will reduce travel time between the cities to one hour and 39 minutes, said Yang Tao, an official with the Wuhan railway bureau.

The Hanyi Railway is part of the Shanghai-Wuhan-Chengdu Railway, an east-west corridor listed in China's national high-speed railway development plan.

The 2,078-km railway will travel though four provinces and two municipalities, connecting the cities of Shanghai, Nanjing, Hefei, Wuhan, Chongqing and Chengdu.

Most sections of the Shanghai-Wuhan-Chengdu Railway are in operation, and construction on the last section is slated to be completed in 2013.


Mall fire death toll rises to 10

The death toll has climbed to 10 from a fire that broke out in a commercial mall in North China's Tianjin on Saturday.

Sixteen people suffered minor injuries in the fire, which started around 4 pm in the Laide Commercial Mall in Jixian county, Tianjin.

The blaze was extinguished by 11 pm on Saturday.

Investigators have not yet determined the cause of the fire.


Patrol reaches Huayang Reef

A patrol of four China Marine Surveillance ships reached Huayang Reef in the South China Sea on Sunday.

The CMS vessels set sail on June 26 from the coastal city of Sanya, in South China, to conduct regular patrols in the South China Sea. The ships are expected to travel more than 2,400 nautical miles (4,500 km) during the patrols.

Li Yongbo, team commander, spoke with Chinese officers stationed on the reef while the vessels passed through the area.

Huayang Reef is a coral reef in the Nansha Islands.


Team to explore 'Bigfoot' habitat

Researchers will start exploring large areas of pristine forest this month in the Shennongjia region of Central China's Hubei province, local authorities said on Sunday.

A group of 38 experts from several universities and research institutions will begin the expedition on July 8, according to the Shennongjia Nature Reserve's management bureau.

The trip is scheduled to last through August, it said.

The group will focus on studying the region's animals, plants and land features and will publish its research results later, it said.

Set deep in the remote mountains of Hubei, the Shennongjia Nature Reserve has long been rumored to be the home of an elusive creature known in China as the Yeren, or Chinese Wildman in English, also referred to as "Bigfoot" after the legendary North American ape-man.

Xiangyanghong 09

Last test dive hits 7,000 meters

China's manned submersible Jiaolong completed its program of deep sea dives with a sixth and final dive to 7,000 meters in the Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean on Saturday.

Jiaolong will now enter a trial period of application after having come through its program of test dives to depths ranging from 1,000 to 7,000 meters in the deepest part of the world's oceans.

According to an on-site headquarters, the submersible took three plunges to the depth of 7,000 meters during the six dives, the greatest depth being 7,062 meters.


Response sought to aging society

A seminar on China's strategic response to a rapidly aging society was held by the China National Working Commission on Aging on Sunday.

As a developing economy, China now is facing a double challenge: to improve the welfare and well-being of the elderly and to sustain a relatively high rate of economic growth, said Li Liguo, deputy head of the commission.

China now has 185 million people aged 60 and older on the mainland, accounting for more than 13 percent of the population, and the number is expected to reach 480 million by 2050.

Officials issue heat-wave alert

China's meteorological authority released a high-temperature warning on Sunday, saying the temperature of North China, southern part of the Yangtze River Delta, northern part of South China and parts of the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region will exceed 35 C.

The heat will last for at least three days.

The China Meteorological Administration is calling on the public to guard against heatstroke and minimize fire hazards.


Train service to Lhasa expanded

China will increase passenger train services from major cities to Lhasa, capital of the Tibet autonomous region, to handle a travel surge that has rippled across the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau since a landmark railway opened six years ago, railway officials said on Sunday.

Trains will travel daily between Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong province, and Lhasa starting on July 9, said Wang Tao, a spokesman for the Qinghai-Tibet Railway Company. Chengdu-Lhasa trains will soon follow the same schedule.

Seven Chinese cities now have Lhasa-bound trains. All are expected to operate daily, Wang said.

Among them, Beijing, Shanghai and Xining already have daily trains to Lhasa.

Xinhua-China Daily