Hyundai Rotem, the manufacturer of the high-speed KTX-Sancheon train, will have to pay large compensation to Korail, the national railroad operator, for financial damage caused by defects in the trains.
Earlier, Korail filed a compensation suit against Hyundai Rotem. On Dec. 16, the Seoul Central District Court ruled in favor of Korail that Hyundai Rotem shall pay 6.93 billion won (US$6.29 million).
The court stated, “From April 2010 to January 2013, 63 out of 64 defect accidents that happened in the line were caused by defects in trains when they were manufactured.”
Earlier, Korail had imported French TGV and started its high speed train service with KTX-1. In 2010, it began operating 190 trains of the KTX-Sancheon, which was manufactured by Hyundai Rotem.
However, during the period between March 2010 and January 2013, there were as many as 64 defect accidents, including halted train service, due to mechanical malfunctions. In April 2011, when defects on its brakes were detected, Korail requested inspection and repair on all trains. For this reason, Korail filed a lawsuit against Hyundai Rotem to compensate its operating loss in 2011.
Regarding the issue, Hyundai Rotem said, “The causes of train defect problems can vary. It can be not only a problem of trains but also various factors such as signals, communications systems, and railways. Also, the amount of damages the court ordered is too much, so we are planning to appeal.”