Tourists Warned over Railway Trespassing to View Snow-capped Mountains

Yushan, photo by Dragons70c via Wikimedia Commons

As the Central Mountain Range (中央山脈) has had its share of snowfall already this winter, some tourists have taken the opportunity to get a glimpse of the snow-capped mountains any way they can.

For those who cannot physically reach the mountains, there are views along the east coast on clear days. However, on Saturday some tourists looking for a better view ventured onto the train tracks in Hualien County for less obstructed views, Apple Daily reported.

The photography enthusiasts were attempted to capture shots of Nenggao Mountain (能高), which has an elevation of 3,261 meters (10,699 ft), and Yushan (玉山) with an elevation of 3,952 meters (12,966 ft). The Central Mountain Range has accumulated snow since December, providing a more picturesque view for those who venture out.

The tourists had to retreat from the tracks as they heard the train whistle from an oncoming Puyuma Express.

Netizens questioned the actions of the tourists, posting comments such as “Is it really such a better photo?” Some wondered whether the tourists were aware of the safety concerns.

Taiwan Railways Administration Division of Hualien Transportation Director Wu Chin-tien (吳金添) said that the railway has exclusive right of way and that people have been breaking the law by trespassing on the tracks under article 70 of the Railways Act. He added that people should be aware of the danger of walking on the tracks.

Police noted that Hualien and Taitung have had similar problems in the past of people standing on the tracks to take photos of the mountains. Hualien Railway Police Department Chief Hsieh Ming-shun (謝明順) said that those caught trespassing could face a fine of NT$10,000 (US$338) to NT$50,000 (US$1690) per offense.

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