China's railway traffic hits new high on grave-sweeping day

2008-04-05 08:56:47 Xinhua English

BEIJING, April 5 (Xinhua) -- China's railways carried a record of 5.3 million people nationwide on the past Qingming, or grave-sweeping day, on Friday, up 57 percent compared with the same day a year ago, according to statistics from the Ministry of Railways.

The volume of short-haul passenger traffic surged more than 80 percent or even more than doubled year on year as more people choose to pay respects to their deceased relatives or go spring outing, Wang Yongping, ministry spokesman, said on Saturday.

More than 100 million people went grave-sweeping Friday, according to estimation by the Ministry of Civil Affairs.

China revised the official holiday schedule last October, adding three traditional festivals -- Qingming, Duanwu and Zhongqiu -- in response to public calls.