HAVANA — The first train using new equipment from China pulled out of Havana Saturday, hauling excited passengers on the start of a 915 kilometer (516 mile) journey to the eastern end of the island as the government tries to overhaul the country’s aging and decrepit rail system.
The 14 gleaming Chinese cars and a locomotive departed the city’s central train station and will wend their way through nine cities before ending in Guantanamo 15 hours later. It has four air-conditioned wagons and a rolling restaurant car. Previously the trip could take days because of equipment breakdowns and track erosion.
It marks a first step of an overhaul Cuba’s communist government started early last year, repairing some 2,600 miles of aging tracks and dozens of tumble-down stations scattered around the island.
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