Boy has lucky escape after falling onto high-speed train line

A three-year-old boy escaped unharmed after falling onto the track at a railway station in central China.
PHOTO: South China Morning Post

A three-year-old boy had a narrow escape on Sunday after falling onto the track at a railway station in central China.

The youngster was posing in front of a stationary bullet train at Wuchang Railway Station in Wuhan, capital of Hubei province, while his mother was taking photographs and filming him as a souvenir of their ride home for the Lunar New Year holiday, news portal reported.

But when she asked him to take a step backwards, the child lost his footing and tumbled into the gap between the platform and the train.

An employee ran to help and after climbing down into the gap managed to lift the boy to safety, the report said.

Apart from being a little shaken, the child was unhurt and he and his family were able to continue on their journey home.

And thanks to the quick thinking of the station worker, the train was not even delayed.

With the Lunar New Year holiday officially set to get under way on Tuesday, hundreds of millions of people across the country have making their way home over recent days. The annual migration, known as chunyun in Chinese, puts a massive strain on the nation's transport infrastructure.

Over the coming "golden week" - as the holiday is often known - an estimated 400 million trips will be made by train, with that figure rising to 2.99 billion for all trips made by rail, road and air over the 40-day travel period - from January 21 to March 1 - that covers the extended break taken by many migrant workers.

The huge numbers often lead to a spike in accidents and injuries during the holiday travel period.

In 2017 alone, 898 people were killed in railway-related accidents, with most of the fatalities attributed to people being hit by trains while trying to cross the track at non-designated spots, according to official figures.

This article was first published in South China Morning Post