First Railway Traverses China's Sichuan Earthquake Zone
Xu Zuwei
/SOURCE : Yicai
First Railway Traverses China's Sichuan Earthquake Zone

(Yicai Global) Aug. 10 -- A Chinese rail line has for the first time been built along the Longmenshan Fault, a seismic zone prone to strong earthquakes, such as the one which struck it in the catastrophic 2008 Wenchuan event, which claimed at least 69,000 lives and left 17,000 missing.

China's Cheng-Lan Railway officially started station construction on the section from Chengdu to Chuanzhusi in southwestern Sichuan province yesterday, marking the first time a Chinese railway line has traversed the 70 by 500 kilometer Longmenshan Fault on the northwestern edge of the Sichuan Basin. 

The project uses a variety of seismic fortification techniques to raise its earthquake-resistance capacity, state Xinhua news agency reported.

The Cheng-Lan Railway from Chengdu, Sichuan province to Lanzhou in northwestern Gansu province is 276 kilometers long and has a design speed of 200 kilometers per hour. Complex geological conditions impose high seismic prevention and disaster mitigation requirements on this stretch.

Ten passenger station will be built along the segment that crosses the earthquake area. They will have a total constructed area of 27,000 square meters.

The 8.0 Richter scale Wenchuan Earthquake convulsed Beichuan county May 12, 2008. An 7.0-earthquake that hit Ya'an in Sichuan province on the same day also lies along the extensive fault.

Editor: Ben Armour

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Keywords: Sichuan , Railway