Chinese Train Maker Recalls 54 Bullet Trains

Posted August 11th, 2011 at 11:40 pm (UTC-5)
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One of China's leading train manufacturers is recalling 54 bullet trains used on the new Beijing to Shanghai high-speed rail line.

State-owned China CNR Corporation said Friday it would carry out a complete inspection and possible improvements, but gave no other details. The recall applies only to trains on the Beijing to Shanghai line.

The announcement came one day after Beijing ordered a leading train manufacturer to shut down some production lines. Two days earlier, China suspended approval of all new railway projects and ordered operators to reduce train speeds. The steps are a response to the crash of two high-speed trains on July 23 that killed 40 people.

The China North Locomotive and Rolling Stock company said Thursday it is halting production of its most advanced trains, which operate on the high-volume corridor between Beijing and Shanghai. News reports said there has been a series of breakdowns on the line resulting from faulty sensor signals.

Faulty signals were also blamed in the July 23 crash, in which one train plowed into another that had stalled because of a lightning strike. Investigators said operators failed to respond manually when an automatic signal failed to warn the second train to come to a halt.