Qinghai-Tibet railway is ready for operation on
July 1, said a senior official with the Ministry of Railways at a
news conference here Thursday.
Zhu Zhensheng, vice director of an office in charge of the
railway under the ministry, said the railway will go into operation
one year ahead of the schedule with good construction, environment
and safety conditions.
The Qinghai-Tibet railway stretches 1,956 km from Xining,
capital of Qinghai Province, to Lhasa, capital of Tibet Autonomous
Region. The section of 814 km from Xining to Golmud began operation
Most parts of the 1,142-km new track from Golmud to Lhasa are
located more than 4,000 meters above sea level, with the highest
point at 5,072 meters.
In this regard, the railway is the highest in the world, said
Zhu at the news conference held by the Information Office of the
According to Zhu, the construction of the railway has resolved
three major difficulties -- frozen tundra, high altitude and
plateau environmental protection.
The testing operations of freight trains and passenger trains
have been smooth, which paves the way for the formal operation of
the track, said Zhu.
In testing operations, the trains reached the designed speed of
100 km per hour when running across the frozen tundra and 120 km
per hour in non-tundra area, he said.
Trains linking Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Lanzhou, Xining and
Lhasa will operate in the early phase, and more trains will be
added in the near future, said Zhu.
(Xinhua News Agency June 29, 2006)