Cat Linh-Ha Dong trains passed safety and environmental assessment hinh anh 1A section of Cat Linh-Ha Dong urban metro project crosses through Hoang Cau area, Hanoi. (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNS/VNA) - The Vietnam Register Authority under the Ministry of Transport announced it has completed the assessment and issued technical safety and environmental protection certification for 13 trains and other related components of the Cat Linh-Ha Dong urban railway, Hanoi’s long-delayed first metro project.

The announcement came four days after the project started whole-system test runs on December 12 lasting through the end of 2020, eyeing commercial operations by March 2021.

The inspected items include an actual composition of each of the train’s equipment and components (in both idle and moving state) and checking them against the approved planning and national standards on imported rail components.

The vehicles passing the technical standards verification will be certified to be operated.

After the independent French consulting firm Apave-Certifier-Tricc consortium finished their assessment, the Vietnam Register would have a final verification and issue certification proving the safety of the whole system before the metro project can commence official operations.

Once given the green light, the project will be handed over to the Hanoi authorities to manage.

Safety assessment includes reliability, readiness, serviceability and safety of vehicle system, train control signaling, plans to evacuate passengers in cases of emergency (on the elevated rail lines and in the stations), smoke and heat management systems and ventilation inside tunnels, electricity compatibility, system integration, test operations, and safety controls.

During the 20-day trial, every day there will be a total of 287 train journeys, running from 5am to 11pm, with the frequency of one trip every 5-6 minutes during rush hours, just like the commercial operations.

According to the design, the Cat Linh-Ha Dong urban metro project has a mainline of more than 13km elevated rail line, 12 stations and 13 trains.

Each train has four cars, capable of carrying more than 900 people, with the design speed of 80km/h but the commercial run’s speed would be capped at an average of 35km/h.

Previously, at the Standing meeting of the Government on the implementation of the Hanoi urban railway projects, Minister of Transport Nguyen Van The pledged the project would enter commercial operations in the first quarter of 2021, four years after the original finishing date.

The project, which commenced in October 2011, with an investment capital of about 18 trillion VND from China’s official development assistance to Vietnam, has suffered numerous setbacks and delays.

Most recently, hundreds of Chinese technicians and experts have been unable to leave China or enter Vietnam to work on the project due to border closure policies in place in the previous months.

The Hanoi People’s Committee has announced the price of the tickets for the Cat Linh-Ha Dong metro, with the lowest one being 8,000 VND for a trip and 30,000 VND for a day pass.

A month pass for the common passenger is priced 200,000 VND./.