BEIJING, China-- The Wuhan-Guangzhou high-speed railway
started to operate at a 217 miles (350 km)-per-hour designed
speed - setting the new world record for the Fastest
train. Photo: The world's
fastest train runs on the Wuhan-Guangzhou high-speed railway.
Photo by: Zhou Chao
"The train can go 394.2 kilometres per hour,
it's the fastest train in operation in the world," Zhang Shuguang,
head of the transport bureau at the railways ministry, told
Two trains seperately start from Wuhan and Guangzhou
city at 9 am and reach their destinations within three hours.
China Ministry of Railways spokesman
Wang Yongping said with the completion of the Zhengzhou-Xian,
Beijing-Shanghai high-speed railway projects and upgrading
some of the present electric train services, Beijing would
become the hub of railway transport for major cities in China
train service has cut short the travel time by seven-anda-half
hours, where the normal train took ten-and-a-half hours.
Tickets for regular services range from
50 to 280 yuan but to travel on the new 350-km/h link costs
about 800 yuan for first class and 500 for second class.
Beijing has an ambitious rail development
programme aimed at increasing the national network from the
current 86,000 kilometres to 120,000 kilometres, making it
the most extensive rail system outside the United States.
The network uses technology developed in
co-operation with foreign firms such as Siemens,
Bombardier and Alstom.
train was said to have achieved a maximium speed of
394.2 km per hour during its trail run in December.
The average speed of France's high speed
train is 277km per hour, while Japan's is 243 km per hour,
and 232 km per hour in Germany.
By 2012, trips from Beijing to most provincial
capital cities would only take one to eight hours, said Wang
Yongping, the Railway Ministry spokesman.
trains run across Hubei, Hunan and Guangdong provinces,
connecting 11 cities and 44 district.
The high-speed rail services from Beijing
to Hong Kong are expected to open in three years, cutting
the journey from 23 hours to 8. The one-way trip from Shanghai
to Hong Kong will be shortened to six hours from the current
18, he said.
The previous Guinness world record for the fastest
train was 277km per hour set by France.