Friday 9 December 2016

At least 100,000 new year travellers stuck at railway station in China

David Kearns

Published 02/02/2016 | 09:42

Passengers wait to enter a railway station in Guangzhou Credit: China Daily
Passengers wait to enter a railway station in Guangzhou Credit: China Daily
Passengers wait to enter a railway station in Guangzhou Credit: China Daily

Up to 100,000 people were left stranded at a train station in southern China after bad weather shut down rail lines ahead of Chinese New Year.

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Vast crowds of workers swamped the Guangzhou’s main railway station in hopes of making it back to their family homes ahead of Lunar New Year festivities on 8 February, which will usher in the Year of the Monkey. 

However, heavy snow in the northern and central provinces caused delays to dozens of trains, leaving tens of thousands of people stranded.

Aerial photographs show a crush of bodies snaking in and around the station.

Passengers wait to enter a railway station in Guangzhou Credit: China Daily
Passengers wait to enter a railway station in Guangzhou Credit: China Daily

Part of the problem was caused by some of the passengers being a little overzealous to get to the station with plenty of time to spare, said railway authorities.

About 176,000 passengers pass through Guangzhou’s main railway station on Monday, they added.

More than 2,600 security personnel were drafted in to try and keep order.

Meanwhile, subway and ferry services were stopped to prevent more people from trying to reach the Guangzhou station, reports the South China Morning Post.

“We were turning down passengers who want to go to the train station because we’re not allowed to approach the area anymore,” said one taxi driver.

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