After mudslides in China stranded nearly 1,000 passengers for more than 10 hours, a train attendant drew praise for keeping passengers calm.
In the video, which went viral on Chinese social media network Douyin, Zhao Yang can be seen delivering an “impassioned” plea for the travelers to remain calm, according to the South China Morning Post. The clip received about 3 million likes by Aug. 6.
The July 30 train trip, from Inner Mongolia to Beijing, was halted in Mentougou District outside the Chinese capital by at least two mudslides. The 976 passengers included 44 students and 24 train attendants who had little food or water, according to the Post.
Zhao and her colleagues disembarked from the train, and some walked nearly half a mile to pick up instant noodles and water for their charges, she told the outlet.
“Our train’s service principle is people and life first,” Zhao said. “ … Please do not flock and crowd together, even if you don’t get food immediately.”
“The food will be provided to each of you for free,” she continued. “After you fetch the food, please return to your seats. Let’s avoid any danger. You got it?”
The Post reported that most passengers agreed to Zhao’s requests. “Many people [said] they were moved by her efforts to comfort passengers,” Alice Yan wrote.
Reuters reported the mudslides were caused by Typhoon Doksuri, one of the strongest storms to hit China in years. Rising global temperatures, largely due to our reliance on dirty energy sources, are making hurricanes and typhoons drop more rain, according to NASA. Good public transportation options, such as high-speed trains that run on electricity, are one way to help combat this.
“A couple of degrees warmer doesn’t sound like much, but water cycle impacts are tangible,” Matt Rodell, a NASA hydrologist, said. “Global warming is going to cause more intense droughts and wet periods, which affects people, the economy, and agriculture around the world.”
Such weather events can wreak havoc on transportation, and China features an array of high-speed trains, including the world’s fastest train. The Shanghai Maglev can reach speeds of 621 mph, though Mother Nature at times could render that kind of feat irrelevant — and make storm victims all the more thankful for the Zhaos of the world.
“This is a natural disaster,” one commenter wrote on Douyin, according to the Post. “You don’t need to cry, we understand your job is not easy.”
“She is afraid in her heart, but she must look calm to comfort passengers because of her uniform,” another commenter said. “Maybe in private, she would be crying and missing her parents. But in this moment, she is a tranquillizer for passengers.”
In May, another video taken aboard a high-speed train in China went viral when a passenger showcased how they could steadily balance a coin on end as they traveled at 348 kilometers per hour (216 miles per hour).
Join our free newsletter for cool news and actionable info that makes it easy to help yourself while helping the planet.