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Railway accidents drop due to screen doors, facility renovations: data

All Headlines 10:18 April 04, 2017

SEOUL, April 4 (Yonhap) -- Railway accidents and accidental deaths have decreased gradually in recent years, official data showed Tuesday, as the government has invested heavily in the building of screen doors separating railway tracks and platforms and the renovation of old railroad facilities.

The number of railway accidents fell to 123 cases last year from 138 the previous year, the data by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport said.

The comparable figures were 250 for 2012, 232 for 2013 and 209 for 2014.

Annual rail passenger miles, meanwhile, rose to 224 million kilometers last year from 217 million kilometers in 2012.

The number of accidents for every 100 million passenger miles was 7.6 in 2016, compared with 10.9 for Germany and 8.2 for Italy.

Total fatalities caused by railway accidents also declined steadily to 96, 80, 76 and 62 between 2013 and 2016 from 108 in 2012.

The 62 accidental deaths related to railways last year break down to 35 presumed suicides, 18 deaths by trespassing and two from falls at railway construction sites. There was no data for the remaining seven deaths.

"The number of accidental deaths at railways has dropped as we've enhanced railway facility safety by building screen doors and renovating old railroad facilities," a ministry official said. "We will complete the installation of screen doors at 910 railway stations across the country by the end of this year and continue to renovate old trains and railway facilities so we can reduce railway accidents by 30 percent by 2020."

This file photo, taken on Dec. 8, 2016, shows employees of a new high-speed Supreme Railways Train posing for the camera at Suseo Station in southern Seoul. (Yonhap)

hdh@yna.co.kr
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