High-Speed Rail Project Deadline Unchanged Despite Construction Accident
TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Coordinating Minister of Maritime Affairs and Investments Luhut Pandjaitan on Tuesday gave a statement regarding the accident involving a construction train for the Jakarta-Bandung High-Speed Rail project. The incident that is said to be caused by a train that had derailed happened at the Padalarang, West Bandung railway section on Sunday, December 18.
The accident, unfortunately, killed two Chinese nationals who were working as technicians at the time and injured four others.
The Minister insisted that the accident happened due to human error. “It was a human error. Two workers from China [who died],” said the Minister as journalists met him at the corruption prevention event in Jakarta on December 20.
Minister Luhut then proceeded to explain that the accident likely happened when the construction train reduced its speed as it traveled to the location, which eventually caused it to derail from the tracks.
“It was a technical accident,” said Luhut, who also assumes the position of chairperson of the High-Speed Rail Commission.
Asked whether this accident would affect the ambitious project’s deadline, Luhut asserted that the initial schedule for the completion of one of Indonesia’s National Strategic Projects (PSN) will be on June 2023, which remains unchanged.
The actual deadline for the completion of the High-Speed Rail project that aims to connect two major cities in Java Island was in 2019. Minister Luhut Pandjaitan had even conveyed the government’s intention to stick to this deadline to Chinese President Xi Jinping at the G20 Summit back in November.
However, the construction at the accident site for the high-speed rail project has been temporarily halted until further investigation is completed.
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