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Bullet train crash in China kills 35

At least 35 people killed and 210 injured when two trains derailed in eastern China on Saturday.

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(Antler)

At least 35 people were killed and 210 injured Saturday when a Chinese bullet train flew off an elevated track in Wenzhou, a city in Zhejiang province, Chinese state media said.

The train reportedly lost power after being struck by lightning and was rear-ended by another train. The crash sent two carriages careening off an elevated track.

A total of six carriages were derailed between the two trains, one of which originated from Beijing and the other from Hangzhou, according to the official Xinhua news agency.

The train was travelling between the cities of Hangzhou and Wenzhou in eastern China's Zhejiang province when it went off the rails around 8:30 p.m., the Daily Star reported, citing local firefighting sources.

The collision is the first major accident in China's high-speed rail network, set to reach 10,000 miles by 2020, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The newest line in that network, a $33 billion Beijing-Shanghai route, opened less than a month ago, according to Agence France-Presse. That line cuts the rail journey time between the two Chinese cities to five hours, but has been besieged by electrical glitches in recent weeks because of poor weather, officials said.

The safety of the national network was also called into question when the head of the railway ministry was removed in February because of a corruption scandal believed to have led to shoddy construction.

The ministry has since decreased top speeds on the system as a precautionary measure.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/china/110723/bullet-train-crash-china-kills-11