In Southwest China's Yunnan Province, a group of technicians and builders kept striving for smooth operation of the power supply system of the China-Laos Railway in May, 2022.
Inspection was a critical part of the entire project which included examination of the towers, wiring and stringing, and security channels regulations by the contractors and final inspection by the Yunnan Provincial Power Construction Engineering Quality Supervision Center. All these are required before applying for operation.
Zheng Dayu, a staff member at the power supply and transmission management bureau in Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture, spent all day inspecting the construction site.
According to Zheng, the inspectors also had to climb up the towers to check the circuits and cables. They also need to master various technical skills like using the unmanned aerial vehicles to support inspection.
Builders of the towers on site had similar challenges. In Yuxi, the dry-hot valley, builders had to carry three liters of water for a day's drinking in addition to engineering tools for wiring and device installation.
Material transport was also a difficulty. Some towers are located in the rainforest. To protect local environment, large-scale equipment were not able to be used, therefore labor and horses became the only modes for transfer.
A large amount of materials were transported to the site by horses in Xishuangbanna, Yuxi and Puer.
Luo Sigen, a member of the transport groups, said that they had to start climbing the mountains before 8 o’clock every day and a great amount of materials had to be carried. More than 30 metric tons of materials were needed to build a single tower.
He recalled one incident. After a night rain the leg of a horse was stuck in the mud. When they were preparing for a rescue, they found that the horse had already fallen asleep.
Challenges are not only seen in rainforest and mountain areas.
Tang Song, one of the builders, participated in the construction of a foundation trench in Jinghong of Xishuangbanna. The project he was responsible for was located in a sugarcane farmland where large-scale equipment and machinery can be use. However, quick sand was dug during excavation, and they had to re-make an engineering plan.
Yunnan is one of the provincial regions with the most complicated geological condition in China. It has crossing and distributed mountains and rivers, steep precipices and cliffs and the special karst landforms. Builders had to make different engineering solutions to each kind of landform, which called for accurate and attentive preparation before building.
Construction of the power supply project for the railway started in December 2019. More than 4,000 builders and technicians conquered challenges such as high temperature, rain season and the COVID-19 outbreak. Although China-Laos Railway has been in operation, their work never stops. They are heading towards next construction sites, always ready to support more trains smoothly and safely running on the railway.
(Executive editor: Wang Ruoting)