The number of railway accidents in Hanoi decreased compared with last year thanks to closer management, said Nguyen Duc Kha, chief of the Hanoi Traffic Safety Committee.

In the first quarter this year, the city saw eight railway accidents, a decrease by two cases compared with the same period last year. The accidents killed seven people, a decrease by one compared with last year, according to statistics of the committee.

Last year the city had 31 railway accidents killing 41 people, a decrease by six and five compared with the year 2010.

Fourteen guard stations were set up in April last year by the Hanoi Department of Transport with an aim of strengthening supervision at the crossings. Nine of them are in Thuong Tin and Phu Xuyen districts that have been hot spots for railway accidents.

Four workers were assigned to keep watch at each station day and night, said Kha.

The committee asked district authorities and management companies to repair warning signals and whistles regularly. Trees and bushes along railways were also cleared to widen the train drivers' line of vision.

"The committee is considering setting up a hotline so that local residents can inform authorities if any alarm system is out of order," Kha said.

"But the most important task is to raise residents' awareness," he added.

To continue to reduce the number of railway accidents, the committee will kick off new information campaigns to disseminate traffic rules along the railway lines.

Officials will coordinate with the media to publish reports and inform residents about traffic safety regulations, he said.

According to Vietnam Railways, the country saw 533 railway accidents last year killing 271 people and injuring 353 others.

Hanoi had the highest number of railway accidents followed by Nghe An, Ha Nam and Dong Nai provinces.-VNA