JavaScript is off. Please enable to view full site.

Hanoi begins clearing famed railway cafés after train pulls emergency brake to avoid tourists

Tuesday, October 08, 2019, 16:07 GMT+7
Hanoi begins clearing famed railway cafés after train pulls emergency brake to avoid tourists
Tourists take photos of a passing train in Hanoi. Photo: AFP

The Hanoi administration has launched an all-out campaign to crack down on makeshift cafés which have become popular photo spots along a railroad that snakes through the city’s crowded neighborhoods, after a train was forced on Sunday to make an emergency stop to wait for tourists to clear the tracks.

In a directive sent this week to the administrations of Hanoi’s districts through which the rail tracks pass, the municipal People’s Committee asked that local authorities increase inspection of establishments along the railroad to make sure safety violations are “timely detected.”

The districts are ordered to “strictly handle” violating businesses by October 12.

The crackdown began after a train which was leaving a Hanoi train station on Sunday afternoon was forced to make an emergency stop while passing Phung Hung Street in Hoan Kiem District to avoid plowing into tourists, national television VTV reported.

A tourist lies face-down across railway tracks in Hanoi for a photo shoot. Photo: AFP

A tourist lies face-down across railway tracks in Hanoi for a photo shoot. Photo: AFP

Those who gathered on the railroad for photos and drinks reportedly could not get off the tracks in time before the train arrived, forcing the operator to pull the brakes.

The incident caused the train to be delayed for a few minutes, according to VTV.

Makeshift cafés established along the railroad in Hanoi have become famous photo spots as they allow customers to sit and enjoy coffee just inches from the railway tracks.

The thrill of being so dangerously close to a passing train has been described by some tourists on travel review site TripAdvisor as “unique” and a “must-do” while visiting the Vietnamese capital.

Visitors have drinks at cafés next to the railway track in Hai Ba Trung District, Hanoi. Photo: Nam Tran / Tuoi Tre

Visitors have drinks at cafés next to the railway track in Hai Ba Trung District, Hanoi. Photo: Nam Tran / Tuoi Tre

However, these café businesses have also raised safety concerns as they place their furniture and offer drinks right on the railway’s safety corridor.

The Vietnamese Ministry of Transport last week asked Hanoi to quickly clear the railway corridor in four districts - Hoan Kiem, Ba Dinh, Dong Da, and Hai Ba Trung, where encroachment by “train track cafés” are most rampant.

“This is really a danger for social security, order and safety,” said Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Ngoc Dong, who asked the capital authorities to shut down these railway cafés and prevent such businesses from reopening.

The ministry also sought to prohibit gathering and photography on or near the rail tracks.

VTV reported that the number of people visiting the cafés grew last weekend compared the previous following news of the shutdown order.

Tourists pose on railway tracks in Hanoi. Photo: AFP

Tourists pose on railway tracks in Hanoi. Photo: AFP

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to get the latest news about Vietnam!

Tuoi Tre News

Read more

;

Photos

VIDEOS

Experience summer sand-boarding in Mui Ne

Sand-boarding, a popular activity amongst local children in the coastal tourism town of Mui Ne in south-central Vietnam, is attracting hundreds of tourists to the Red Sand Dunes

Young maple trees given better protection as Hanoi enters rainy season

The trees are currently growing well, with green leaves and healthy branches.

Hunting skinks for food in southern Vietnam

Skink meat is known to be soft, tasty, and highly nutritious.

Vietnamese-made app allows people to grow real veggies via smartphone

Nguyen Thi Duyen, a young engineer in Hanoi, developed the app and its related services to help busy people create their own veggie gardens.

Chinese tourists hit by Vietnamese over dine and dash

Four Chinese were reportedly injured, with one having a broken arm.

Latest news

Six shot dead in Czech hospital attack

Police posted on Twitter a picture of a man they initially identified as a suspect but later clarified was a witness, saying they were also searching for another person