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Smokers slow down high-speed trains in China

China,Environment/Wildlife, Tue, 04 Dec 2012 IANS

Beijing, Dec 4 (IANS) Bullet trains in northeast China have been forced to slow down seven times over the past three days because of smoking passengers, police said Tuesday.

In the most recent incident, a fire alarm was triggered by a smoking passenger on high-speed train D8072 from Liaoning province's capital of Shenyang to the city of Dalian at 9 a.m. Monday, forcing the train to slow from 200 km per hour to 120 km per hour, said a police officer.

The 23-year-old smoker was fined 200 yuan ($32), reported Xinhua.

"Smoking is strictly forbidden on high-speed trains, even in the toilets, washing rooms and connecting areas between cars," said the official. "Smoking can trigger fire alarms or even cause a fire on the train."

The Harbin-Dalian High-Speed Railway, which went into operation Saturday linking three provinces in northeast China, is the world's fastest railway in areas with extremely low temperatures. The train's speed can reach up to 350 km per hour.

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