China / Society

Shaanxi to set up crowd-control measures

By Ma Lie in Xi'an (China Daily) Updated: 2012-10-10 01:11

 'Safety, enjoyment of travelers' are priorities, province's governor says

Shaanxi province plans to implement crowd-control measures to curb the number of tourists visiting scenic mountain spots in the wake of overcrowding incidents last week, local authorities said.

The announcement comes after 39,000 tourists flocked to Huashan Mountain on Oct 2 during the eight-day National Day and Mid-Autumn Festival holidays.

The incidents resulted in the stabbing of a couple from North China's Inner Mongolia autonomous region.

Experts will be consulted over the maximum capacity of the scenic spots, according to Zhao Zhengyong, the governor of Shaanxi province.

"The safety and enjoyment of the tourists are the most important things," Zhao said.

Turning his attention to the injured couple, Zhao said that he has asked the relevant departments to investigate the case.

Dong Xianmin, director of the province's tourism administration bureau, said that tourism administrations at different levels in the province will set up an early-warning mechanism to control the number of tourists and will try to improve management and service levels.

Huo Wenjun, director of the Huashan Scenic Zone Management Committee, said that the committee will boost public information services and measures to control the number of tourists.

The scenic zone will stop selling tickets once the number of visitors reaches the upper limit of the zone's capacity, Huo said.

The limitation of the number of tourists is necessary in steep and narrow scenic spots, such as Huashan Mountain, said Xu Jinli, an expert with the province's tourism association.

"I think that the limitation of the number of tourists in Huashan and in similar scenic spots is feasible with fewer ticket sales," Xu said.

Luo Ming, a resident in Xi’an — the capital of Shaanxi province — said that the tourism administration and the scenic zone management committee should provide the tourists with more information about the scenic spots’ capacity.

About 39,000 tourists visited the scenic spot on Oct 2, largely exceeding its maximum capacity of about 20,000 people, according to Weng Peng, director of the tourism department of the scenic zone's management committee.

Stabbing incident

At about 10:30 pm on Oct 2, Dong Liwen and his wife Wang Jiao, from Inner Mongolia, were injured in the parking lot outside the east gate of the Huashan scenic zone, a popular tourism spot that attracts millions of visitors every year.

Dong Liwen, 29, a resident of Qingshan district, in Inner Mongolia's Baotou city, drove with his wife and three relatives to the Huashan scenic zone, which is in Huayin city, for last week's Golden Week holidays.

Dong Liwen said on his micro blog that they got to the top of the mountain in the morning of Oct 2.

However, when they wanted to return to their car at the bottom of the mountain, they had to wait for more than three hours for a bus that would take them down.

They then decided to walk down, as there was no bus to take them and the other tourists.

Dong wrote that the couple was attacked after they reached the bottom of the mountain and asked for a refund of the bus ticket.

Dong and his wife were stabbed and sent to a local hospital. Dong was stabbed nine times and his wife was stabbed twice, doctors said.

A doctor surnamed Zhou, who is treating the couple, told local media that the wounds are not life-threatening.

Dong wrote on his micro blog that the couple was attacked by more than 20 people. He believes that the people are staff members of the scenic zone management committee.

Some tourists who witnessed the attack replied to Dong's micro blog stating that some of those who attacked Dong and his wife wore security uniforms.

The Huashan Scenic Zone Management Committee denied that its staff or security guards attacked the couple.

Pan Xiangming, director of the information center of the management committee, said that an internal investigation showed that the couple was not attacked by their staff or by security guards.

"After the case happened, we sent the injured tourists to a hospital. We paid the medical treatment expenses, and we apologized to the tourists after they suffered with the overcrowding incidents," Pan said.

On Friday, police in Huayin said that two people turned themselves in and confessed that they had stabbed the tourists.

According to police, the two suspects, Liu Weijun, 28, a farmer in the city's Xiaqucheng village, and Wang Qi, 20, a farmer in the city's Chengnan village, had a quarrel with the couple after selling fake tickets to the scenic spot.

Hot Topics