Hanoi metro test run for safety evaluation finally begins

By Doan Loan, Giang Huy   December 11, 2020 | 08:19 pm PT
Hanoi metro test run for safety evaluation finally begins
A train of the Cat Linh-Ha Dong metro line runs over the Hoang Cau Lake in Hanoi during the first day of a 20-day trial run, December 12, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy.
The Cat Linh-Ha Dong metro line started a 20-day test run on Saturday for safety evaluation, the final requirement for the start of commercial operations.

At 5 a.m. the first train departed from Yen Nghia Station in the southwestern district of Ha Dong on the 13-km route to Cat Linh in the downtown district of Dong Da.

At each station the trains stopped for 30 seconds.

Thirteen trains will run until 11 p.m. every day and at an average speed of 35 kilometers per hour.

Each with four cars and a capacity of 900 passengers takes 30 minutes to complete the trip.

The first train of the Cat Linh-Ha Dong metro line runs through many Hanoi streets on December 12, the first day of 20-day trial run. Video by VnExpress/Giang Huy.

All the stations have Vietnamese staff on duty in the control room, ticket office and platform to guide passengers.

Nearly 200 experts from the Chinese general contractor and the contractors in charge of installing the equipment are also present to monitor the test.

Vu Hong Truong, CEO of the Hanoi Metro Co. Ltd., said the Vietnamese employees have practiced for emergency drills since November 4 under the supervision of the Chinese experts.

"Vietnamese conductors are now capable of controlling the trains independently."

The test run will help French consultancy Apave-Certifier-Tricc evaluate the safety and precision of the system.

Depending on the outcome, it will issue the safety certificate in the next quarter. The Ministry of Transport will then hand over the metro to Hanoi authorities to operate.

Though the construction was completed a while ago the safety evaluation was delayed many times since the Chinese and French experts had returned home in late January and were unable to return to Vietnam since international flights were grounded due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The government worked hard to bring them back and hoped commercial operation could begin this year.

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