Tue, Aug 28, 2007 - Page 2 News List

Warning system mulled after latest derailment of train

By Shelley Shan  /  STAFF REPORTER

Taiwan Railway Administration (TRA) said yesterday that it was considering installing an emergency warning system.

The announcement came after a landslide caused a Tzuchiang Express train to derail near Shanli (山里) in Taitung on Sunday.

TRA spokesperson Chang Ying-huei (張應輝) said yesterday that the administration will seek experts' advice before taking further action.

Chang noted the administration has been working with researchers to monitor mudflow along its routes ever since a similar accident happened south of Miaoli Station in June last year.

Chang said that drivers can activate emergency brakes if they see a mudflow and that signals can indicate problems on the track.

The accident on Sunday, however, happened around a bend, generally considered to be blind spots for drivers.

Chang said that the administration may budget for the purchase of the devices next year.

The derailment was not the only mishap the railway operator suffered on Sunday. Smoke was reported coming from the switchgear of Tzuchiang Express train No. 2038.

Another incident occurred in Hualien station when six cars of the Tzuchiang Express, No. 1058, were labeled incorrectly. Passengers reportedly fought over disputed reserved seats, which caused the train to be delayed.

Chang said No. 2038 is an EMU300-model train and that the administration will conduct a comprehensive inspection of the switchgears on all EMU-300s.

Chang said the delay of No.1058 was a result of human error and punitive action would follow.

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