TODAY’S – Labor union: Opening high-speed train line an invitation for disaster

Labor union: Opening high-speed train line an invitation for disasterUnited Transportation Workers Union Secretary-General Hasan BektaI warned that the opening of the Istanbul-Ankara high-speed train line on Friday will be an invitation for disaster, while speaking at a press conference organized by the union earlier this week.“Missing signalization systems have created a major safety vulnerability and is an invitation for disaster,” said BektaI, who said that safety and signalization systems on the high-speed route between the Istanbul suburb of Pendik and the city of EskiIehir have not been completed or are missing entirely.

The high-speed line has been plagued with disasters for over a decade, as Tuesday marked the 10th anniversary of a crash that killed 41 people when an Ankara-bound train derailed. The cause of the accident was due to outdated tracks that could not handle trains traveling at high speeds.

Two incidents of vandalism and theft at construction sites on the line this year created major financial and logistical setbacks. In one of these events, hundreds of signalization cables were vandalized in what Transportation Lutfi Elvan declared to be an act of sabotage.

Last May, station in the province of Sakarya partially collapsed, injuring six workers.The high-speed line is scheduled to begin operations Friday, and one-way ticket prices will reportedly cost between TL 70 and 80.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman