File photo taken on September 20, 2018 shows an experimental operating scene of Vietnam’s first urban railroad in Hanoi, Vietnam. (Xinhua / Ngo Minh Tien)

by Tao Jun, Bui Long

HANOI, Nov. 30 (Xinhua) – An elevated train quietly and swiftly traversed the first multi-level junction in the Vietnamese capital Hanoi, while below, a plethora of vehicles drove at snail speed on a hot summer day. fall full of ear noises, a mix of motorcycle exhausts and horns, and ambulance sirens.

For many foreign visitors to Hanoi in particular and Vietnam in general, even for some local residents, crossing roads or experiencing traffic jams or traffic jams during rush hour almost every day is a real challenge.

“The buses here are often overcrowded; many young drivers usually speed up or cross the red light; and there are hardly any lanes reserved for cyclists or pedestrians, ”a Thai visitor named Natthamon told Xinhua in late November, jokingly smiling,“ You should purchase travel insurance before you travel to Hanoi. ”

For most Hanoians, traveling in the capital is not that expensive or dangerous, but rather inconvenient.

“I ride my motorbike all year round and have not yet encountered any traffic accidents in the past 10 years, although according to official statistics Vietnam faces around 50 road accidents that kill people every day. more than 20 people. What I hate most about traffic here is the frequency of traffic jams and traffic jams, ”said local journalist Nguyen Thu Huong, noting that it takes 45 to 60 minutes to travel 10 km from her home to his office.

As of mid-2017, Hanoi, with a population of nearly 7.7 million, had some five million motorcycles and 500,000 cars, according to the municipal transportation department. The city has decided to ban all motorcycles from circulating in its urban neighborhoods from 2030.

Vu Hong Truong, chairman of Hanoi Railway One Member Limited Company, said that the development of the urban rail system in Hanoi is an urgent issue as the city faces severe traffic jams and environmental pollution.

Truong said Hanoi’s first urban railway, the Cat Linh-Ha Dong Elevated Railway Line, built by China Railway Sixth Group Co. Ltd. using Chinese ODA and Vietnamese reciprocal capital, complete the last stages such as auxiliary equipment like elevators and decoration before starting commercial operation.

There will be 13 trains, including 12 in service and one on standby, traveling through 12 stations a total distance of 13 kilometers in 3 districts, Sun Dezhi, deputy general manager of the overseas branch of Group 6, told Xinhua. Chinese railways.

Each train, which has four cars with a total length of 79 meters, can carry up to 1,000 passengers. It will take passengers around 30 minutes to complete the entire journey, which is quite quick compared to other means of transport as they go their own way.

“The maximum speed of a train is 80 kilometers per hour and its average speed is 35 kilometers per hour. In the short term, trains will leave every 6 minutes. After that, the interval will be only 2 minutes and 30 seconds, ”Sun said. noted.

The Chinese company uses continuous welding technology to ensure high speed, noise and vibration reduction, and anti-derailment, and the signaling system is CBTC (Communication Based Train Control).

“The CBTC is the most modern technology in the world. This system helps shorten the intervals between train departures. The train has an automatic control system that controls its speed,” Sun said.

The Cat Linh-Ha Dong Elevated Railway Project officially started construction in October 2011. The railway test run officially started in September 2018.

File photo taken on September 20, 2018 shows an experimental operating scene of Vietnam’s first urban railroad in Hanoi, Vietnam. (Xinhua / Wang Di)

“There are around 200 Chinese employees on site in Vietnam, and around 1,500 Chinese employees provide administrative support in China,” Sun said, adding that hundreds of Vietnamese technicians had been trained in Vietnam or China to operate the system. railway.

“This new mode of transport in Vietnam will transport large numbers of passengers quickly and easily,” Nguyen Ngoc Dong, Vietnamese vice-minister of transport, told reporters in late September, as he participated in the verification and supervision. experimental operation of the railway line.

During a test run of the Cat Linh-Ha Dong railway line, many Vietnamese were invited to board the trains, and all expressed satisfaction with the new means of transportation in Hanoi.

“By using this air-conditioned train, we do not have to suffer from traffic accidents, traffic jams, traffic jams, smoke, dust, heat in summer or cold in winter, while it is running. quickly and silently, ”said Tran Nhat Duat, 73. -Former Hanoi Transportation Department staff, told Xinhua.

Many other Vietnamese, old and young, men and women, shared similar views.

“You see, my sister and I are standing loosely on the steel brackets to pose for photos on this moving train, but we don’t lean forward or back at all. It means the train is running really well.” , Vu Hien, a young office employee of South Korean-owned SB Tech Vina company, told Xinhua.

Neck to neck with Hien was her younger sister, Vu Nga, who works as a consultant to study abroad in Japan. “This Cat Linh-Ha Dong rail road is not along our way to go to work every day. We hope more roads like this will be built,” she said.

Vietnamese transport officials are considering similar plans to make it easier for local workers and visitors to travel. “We should develop at least three urban rail lines and more bus lines to connect its urban transport systems in the coming time,” Dong said.

“In my opinion, this elevated railway project not only helps alleviate the transport pressure in Hanoi, but also promotes traditional friendship and win-win cooperation between China and Vietnam. The Two Corridors and One Circle plan, ”Sun said.

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