Beijing: A subway collision in Beijing on Thursday evening left 515 people injured, 102 of them with broken bones, authorities said on Friday. The accident was caused by heavy snowfall that affected the city’s transport system.
The collision occurred on the Changping Line, which runs through the western mountainous area of Beijing, around 7 p.m. local time. According to the city’s transport authority, the train in front stopped abruptly due to slipping on the snow-covered tracks. The train behind it failed to brake in time and slid into the rear of the first train.
The impact of the collision caused severe damage to both trains and injured many passengers. Emergency medical personnel, police, and transportation authorities rushed to the scene and evacuated all passengers by around 11 p.m. The injured were taken to nearby hospitals for treatment. As of Friday morning, 25 passengers were under observation and 67 passengers were hospitalized, some in critical condition.
The accident was one of the consequences of the unusually heavy snowfall that hit Beijing and other parts of northern China since Wednesday. The snowstorm, which was the first of the season, forced the suspension of some subway lines and the closure of schools and airports. The city issued a warning of more snowfall and low temperatures in the coming days. The temperature dropped to below minus 11 degrees Celsius overnight, making the roads and tracks slippery and dangerous.
The city’s transport authority said it was investigating the cause of the accident and would take measures to prevent similar incidents in the future. It also apologized to the public for the inconvenience and urged people to travel safely and avoid unnecessary trips. The accident was the worst subway collision in Beijing since 2011, when two trains collided on Line 10, injuring 40 people.