I was just told by a Chinese friend that the Nanjing South Railway Station, which was opened just over 10 days ago is already in need of massive restoration. Apparently the opening was rushed for the 90th anniversary, and tiles were either poorly laid, or the concrete had no completely dried (he was unsure of specifics). The result is that they are having to redo thousands of square feet so that the quality can reach an acceptable level.
I had mentioned that the bridge in Qingdao had also been rushed for the Party’s anniversary, but a day later it came out that it had opened without all of its guard rails in place. The Global Times and CCTV were quick to criticize the local gov’t of making a play to gain face. Their efforts to blame the local gov’t seem a bit misplaced, since the bridge had passed the safety inspection! Apparently only the metal posts need to be in place, but the rails and lights are not considered “primary” structures of the bridge.
Here is the best quote from the article:
Unscrewed nut caps would not affect the safe operation of the bridge, Han Bin, an associate professor with the department of bridge engineering at Beijing Jiaotong University, told the Global Times on Wednesday.
“However, if accidents occur and hit the guard rails, problems might rise,” he said.
Like I have said these problems are widespread, and apparently it is not only the local governments interested in making sure that these structures opened in time for the big celebration.
update to the update: Last night the HSR line broke down due to “thunderstorms”, which led to electrical failure. Fortunately the trains stopped safely, but this is a bit worrying for the week old system. Read more at China Media Project.
2nd update: Apparently I had near perfect timing with this series, today a 2 day old highway in Yunnan province gave way killing two. Pictures of the collapsed freeway are available here (not gruesome).