Destruction of Evidence? China Buries Trains Involved in High-Speed Rail Accident; Japanese Transportation Official Calls Action Unthinkable

China Buries Trains Involved in Accident
A crane (upper left) places part of a train involved in the Chinese high-speed rail accident (below) into a hole dug by the excavator on the upper right.

Destruction of Evidence? China Buries Trains Involved in High-Speed Rail Accident
Yomiuri Shimbun: 証拠隠滅?…中国鉄道事故落下車両を土に埋める
Shihomi Kakutani and Yasuharu Seki reporting from Zhejiang and Beijing, respectively, 12:41 PM July 25, 2011

Repair work following the high speed train crash and derailment on the night of the 23rd in Zhejiang, China was completed on the morning of the 25th, and the line resumed operation.

The trains which crashed and derailed were buried on site, showing that the government decided not to thoroughly investigate the accident. Critics on the web accused the government of “burying evidence”.

Early on the morning of the 24th, several excavators arrived at the scene of the accident and dug a giant hole 15 meters wide and 5 meters deep. Residents told the Yomiuri Shimbun “the cars were broken into pieces and buried inside.” That same afternoon, earth and sand were placed on top, but part of the wreckage was still visible. On the morning of the 25th, excavators broke up the other car. Web users have testified that the heavy machinery destroyed evidence like the gauges in the drivers’ panels, and videos of excavators repeatedly striking the bodies of the trains are circulating the Internet.

Japanese Transportation Safety Official Says Abandoning Train Involved in Accident is Unthinkable
Yomiuri Shimbun: 事故車両を遺棄考えられない…運輸安全委
Staff Report July 25, 2011

The Japanese Transportation Safety Committee, which is responsible for investigating rail and air accidents, said that according to its regulations, train cars involved in accidents can be forbidden from being stowed away or moved.

According to the management of the committee secretariat, “In order to thoroughly investigate the cause of the accident and protect against future accidents, the cars must be thoroughly investigated and analyzed. Even accounting for differences in international customs, abandoning a car involved in an accident is unthinkable.”

Original/原稿:
証拠隠滅?…中国鉄道事故落下車両を土に埋める

中国鉄道事故で高架から落下した車両の一部(下)が、重機で掘った穴に入れられた

【温州(中国浙江省)=角谷志保美、北京=関泰晴】中国浙江省温州で起きた高速鉄道の衝突、脱線事故で、高架上での復旧作業が終わり、25日午前から列車の運行が再開した。

現場では、高架から落下した車両が、地面に掘った穴に埋められ、事故原因の究明をないがしろにする当局の姿勢が鮮明になっている。ネット上などでは「証拠隠滅」との批判が一段と強まっている。

追突して落下した先頭車両の脇では24日早朝、数台のショベルカーが地面に巨大な穴を掘った。穴は幅15メートル、深さ5メートルほどだ。地元住民は読売新聞に「先頭車両は粉々に砕かれ、穴に埋められた」と証言した。同日午後、現場では穴に土砂がかけられ、残骸の一部が露出していた。25日朝からは、ショベルカーがほかの落下車両の車体も砕き始めた。ネット上では「重機が運転席の計器類を壊していた」などの証言とともに、ショベル部分を車体に繰り返し打ちつける映像が出回っている。
(2011年7月25日12時41分 読売新聞)

事故車両を遺棄考えられない…運輸安全委

鉄道や航空などの事故調査を行っている運輸安全委員会によると、日本では同委員会設置法に基づき、事故車両などの保全や移動禁止を命じることができる。

同委員会事務局の幹部は「事故の原因究明や再発防止のためには車両や現場の細かい調査・分析が不可欠であり、国際的に見ても事故車両を遺棄するような対応は考えられない」と指摘している。
(2011年7月25日12時31分 読売新聞)

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