Posts Tagged ‘transportation’

How fast is too fast?

March 14, 2012

                As part of China’s rapid expansion, the entire country is almost constantly upgrading its infrastructure. Wherever you go, you’ll see new highways being dug out, central business districts littered with construction sites as new subway systems are built, and high speed rail networks pushing the technological barrier, seeking to be faster and faster, ever-reducing the transit times between cities.           

                While I haven’t seen any recent statistics, I would suspect that train travel is still the most widely used form of transport. While more and more planes are filling the skies, and cars clogging up the roads as the middle class become richer by the day, for the vast majority of Chinese, train transport is not only efficient, but affordable.

                China has been suffering regular issues with the ongoing upgrading of the train networks, in particular the higher speed lines. Faulty construction and human error were blamed for a crash that occurred last year, killing 40 people. Recently, another segment of line collapsed – a segment which had previously undergone tests. This was possibly due to heavy rains, and thankfully nobody was injured, but it still highlights the fact that this rapid expansion is not without costs.

                It’s one thing to expand as fast as humanly possible – but it’s another issue entirely when quality and safety is seemingly bypassed in favour of efficiency and speed.

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