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The Hambuk Line is an electrified standard-gauge trunk line of the Korean State Railway in North Korea, running from Ch'ŏngjin) on the P'yŏngra Line to Rajin, likewise on the P'yŏngra line.[1]

Hambuk Line
View of the Hambuk Line near Kanp'yŏng
View of the Hambuk Line near Kanp'yŏng
Overview
TypeHeavy rail, Regional rail
StatusOperational
LocaleNorth Hamgyŏng
Rasŏn
TerminiCh'ŏngjin Ch'ŏngnyŏn
Rajin
Stations51
Operation
OpenedStages between 1916–1935
OwnerCh'ŏngjin–Hoeryŏng: Sentetsu (1916–1933)
Hoeryŏng–Tonggwan: Domun Railway (1920–1929)
Hoeryŏng–Tonggwan: Sentetsu (1929–1933)
Tonggwan–Unggi: Sentetsu (1929–1933)
Ch'ŏngjin–Unggi: Mantetsu (1933–1940)
Ch'ŏngjin–Sangsambong: Sentetsu (1940–1945)
Sangsambong–Unggi: Mantetsu (1940–1945)
Unggi–Rajin: Mantetsu (1935–1945)
Ch'ŏngjin–Rajin: Korean State Railway (since 1945)
Depot(s)Hoeryŏng, Sambong
Technical
Line length325.1 km (202.0 mi)
Number of tracksDouble track (Susŏng - Komusan)
Single track
Track gauge1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
partly with 1,520 mm (4 ft 11 2732 in)
(Dual Gauge, Hongŭi-Rajin)
Electrification3000 V DC Overhead lines
Route map

DPRK-Hambuk Line.png

Some stations omitted for clarity
Ch'ŏngjinhang
-3.1
Ch'ŏngjin Ch'ŏngnyŏn
Ch'ŏngjin Choch'ajang
0.0
Panjuk
Kŭndong
4.7
Susŏng
10.3
Sŏngmak
18.1
Changhŭng
24.1
Hyŏngje
Puryŏng Ferroalloy Factory
32.6
Puryŏng
38.9
Komusan
Komusan Cement Factory
Sŏsang
44.7
Sŏkpong
51.4
Ch'angp'yŏng
58.7
Chŏn'gŏri
former mine
89.5
Hoeryŏng Ch'ŏngnyŏn
93.5
Sinhoeryŏng
Closed
96.3
Kŭmsaeng
Kŭngsim-dong
Closed
Chaokai Line
←DPRK-China
Closed
129.9
Sambong
136.2
Hasambong
Closed 1933
142.1
Chongsŏng
150.3
Kangalli
0.8
Gukkyŏng
169.0
0.0
Namyang
Car shops
180.4
Unsŏng
mines
208.2
Hunyung
(Closed)
237.4
Sin'gŏn
Ch'undu
255.0
Songhak
285.6
0.0
Hongŭi
1.0
Chŏkchi
9.5
Tumangang
286.6
Mulgol
←DPRK~Russia
Taejin Port
300.7
Ungsang
313.0
Sŏnbong
Sŭngri Line
3.0
Namrajin
Closed
Namrajin Branch
Closed
328.2
0.0
Rajin
Hambuk Line
Chosŏn'gŭl
Hancha
Revised RomanizationHambukseon
McCune–ReischauerHambuksŏn

The Hambuk line connects to the Hongŭi Line at Hongŭi, which is North Korea's only rail connection to Russia, and at Namyang to the Namyang Border Line, which leads to Tumen, China, via the bridge over the Tumen River.[1]

Although located entirely inside North Hamgyŏng Province, this line is one of the DPRK's main trunk railways. The line's total length is 325.1 km (202.0 mi); in terms of length, it is the second-longest rail line in the country after the P'yŏngra Line, accounting for 7.7% of the national total of railway lines.[2]

Over ten rail lines - secondary mainlines and branchlines - connect to the Hambuk Line, including the Musan Line, the Hoeryŏng Colliery Line, the Kogŏnwŏn Line, the Hoeam Line, and the Hongŭi Line, along with numerous branchlines. The Hambuk Line connects three cities and four counties - Ch'ŏngjin City, Puryŏng County, Hoeryŏng City, Onsŏng County, Kyŏngwŏn County, Kyŏnghŭng County, and the Rason Special City.

In terms of regional characteristics, the Hambuk Line passes through two largely distinct areas. It runs inland in mountainous terrain between Panjuk to Hoeryŏng, then along the Tumen River and the northern border of the country all the way to Rajin. The steepest part of the line is between Puryŏng and Ch'angp'yŏng, where the ruling gradient is over 20‰. Conversely, the route on the Tumen River's bank along the national border is comparatively flat.

There is double track from Susŏng, where the line connects to the Kangdŏk line, to Komusan, where the Musan line begins; the dual-gauge section (standard and Russian gauges) from Hongŭi to Rajin is also double-tracked.

There are service facilities for locomotives in Hoeryŏng and Sambong and for rolling stock in Namyang.[2]

Contents

HistoryEdit

The Hambuk Line was created by the combination of a number of lines that were originally built by several different railway companies.[1]

The Ch'ŏngjin–Hoeryŏng section was originally part of the Hamgyŏng Line of the Chosen Government Railway (Sentetsu), completed in three stages between November 1916 and November 1917.[3]

The section from Hoeryŏng to Tonggwan (now called Kangalli) line was built by the privately owned Tomun Railway between 1920 and 1924, and in 1929 was nationalised by Sentetsu, which named it the West Tomun Line.[4] The East Tomun Line, from Tonggwan to Unggi (now Sŏnbong), was built by Sentetsu between 1929 and 1933; after completion of the East Tomun Line, it was merged with the West Tomun Line to create the Tomun Line.[5]

In October 1933, management of the entire line from Ch'ŏngjin to Unggi was transferred to the South Manchuria Railway (Mantetsu);[6] at that time, the Ch'ŏngjin–Sambong section was added to the existing (Wŏnsan–Ch'ŏngjin) Hamgyŏng Line, whilst the Sambong–Unggi section became Mantetsu's North Chosen Line.[7] Mantetsu connected this line to the port at Rajin by opening the Ungna Line from Unggi to Rajin on 1 November 1935.[7]

In 1940, the Ch'ŏngjin–Sambong line was transferred back to the Chosen Government Railway, and was made part of the Hamgyŏng Line running from Wŏnsan to Sambong. An express train from Seoul to Mudanjiang via this line was inaugurated at this time. Until the end of the Pacific War, the Ch'ŏngjin–Sambong section remained part of Sentetsu's Hamgyŏng Line, the Sangsambong–Unggi section and the adjoining branch lines remained part of Mantetsu's North Chosen Line, and the Ungna Line remained part of Mantetsu's network, as well.

Service on the line was suspended after the Soviet invasion at the end of the Pacific War. The damage sustained by the line during the war - including the destruction of the Tumen River bridges at both Hunyung and Sambong - was slow to be repaired due to strained relations between the Soviets and the Korean People's Committees; those two bridges have not been repaired to the present day. However, after the outbreak of the Korean War, the Soviets built a branchline from Baranovsky on the Vladivostok branch of the Soviet Far Eastern Railway to Khasan. The station at Khasan was opened on 28 September 1951, and in 1952 a wooden railway bridge was built across the Tumen River to Tumangang in North Korea,[8] connecting to the newly built Hongŭi Line from Tumangang to Hongŭi on the North Chosen Line.

Following the end of the Korean War, the Ch'ŏngjin–Sambong section of the Hamgyŏng Line, the Sambong–Unggi (renamed Sŏnbong) section of the North Chosen Line, and the Ungna Line from Sambŏng to Rajin were merged to create the Hambuk Line; this line, having been damaged during the war, was rebuilt with Soviet and Chinese assistance. The Korean-Russian Friendship Bridge across the Tumen River was commissioned on 9 August 1959, replacing the temporary wooden bridge, which had grown to be insufficient for the traffic crossing the river,[9] and in 1965 the P'yŏngra Line was completed to Rajin, meeting up with the terminus of the Hambuk Line.

In 2008 work was begun to convert the line from the DPRK–Russia border to the port at Rajin to dual (standard and Russian) gauge, including the entirety of the Hongŭi Line and the Hongŭi-Rajin section of the Hambuk Line.[10]

ServicesEdit

FreightEdit

Much of the on-line freight traffic involves the transport of magnetite and ironstone from the Musan Mining Complex and other mines on the Musan Line and coal from mines on the Hoeryŏng Colliery Line and the Kogŏnwŏn Line, to the Kim Chaek Iron & Steel Complex at Kimchaek and the Ch'ŏngjin Steel Works in Ch'ŏngjin, and import-export traffic to and from Russia via the Hongŭi Line and to and from China via Namyanggukkyŏng Line ; the primary exports shipped through Namyang to China are magnetite, talc and steel, and the main import is coke.[2]

PassengerEdit

Three pairs of passenger express trains are known to operate on this line:[1]

  • Express trains 7/8, operating between P'yŏngyang and Moscow via Tumangang, run on this line between Rajin and Hongŭi;
  • Express trains 9/10, operating between P'yŏngyang and Musan, run on this line between Chŏngjin and Komusan;
  • Semi-express trains 113/114, operating between West P'yŏngyang and Onsŏng, run on this line between Ch'ŏngjin and Unsŏng;

There are also long-distance trains between Kalma on the Pyongra Line and Rajin via Ch'ŏngjin and Hoeryŏng; between Ch'ŏngjin and Rajin via Hoeryŏng; between Haeju on the Hwanghae Ch'ŏngnyŏn Line and Onsŏng via Ch'ŏngjin and Hoeryŏng; and between Tanch'ŏn on the P'yŏngra Line and Tumangang via Ch'ŏngjin and Hoeryŏng.[2]

There are also various commuter trains that serve the main industrial zones along the line, including trains 623/624 operating between Rajin and Sŏnbong;[1] between Kogŏnwŏn on the Kogŏnwŏn Line and Hunyung via Singŏn; between Hoeryŏng and Ch'ŏn'gŏ-ri; between Ch'angp'yŏng and Sŏkpong; between Namyang and Hunyung; and between Hoeryŏng and Sech'ŏn via Sinhakp'o.[2]

RouteEdit

A yellow background in the "Distance" box indicates that section of the line is not electrified.


Distance
(Total; km)
Distance
(S2S; km)
Station Name
(Transcribed)
Station Name
(Chosŏn'gŭl (Hanja))
Former Name
(Transcribed)
Former Name
(Chosŏn'gŭl (Hanja))
Connections
-3.1 531.0 Ch'ŏngjin Ch'ŏngnyŏn 청진청년 (清津青年) Ch'ŏngjin 청진 (清津) P'yŏngra Line, Ch'ŏngjin Port Line
0.0 3.1 Panjuk 반죽 (班竹)
4.7 4.7 Susŏng 수성 (輸城) Kangdŏk Line
10.3 5.6 Sŏngmak 석막 (石幕)
18.1 7.8 Changhŭng 장흥 (章興)
24.1 6.0 Hyŏngje 형제 (兄弟)
32.6 8.5 Puryŏng 부령 (富寧)
38.9 6.3 Komusan 고무산 (古茂山) Musan Line
44.7 5.8 Sŏkpong 석봉 (石峰)
51.4 6.7 Ch'angp'yŏng 창평 (蒼坪)
58.7 7.3 Chŏn'gŏri 전거리 (全巨里)
64.8 6.1 P'ungsan 풍산 (豊山)
69.4 4.6 Ch'angdu 창두 (昌斗)
76.4 7.0 Chungdo 중도 (中島)
82.4 6.0 Taedŏk 대덕 (大徳)
89.5 7.1 Hoeryŏng Ch'ŏngnyŏn 회령 청년 (会寧青年) Hoeryŏng 회령 (会寧) Hoeryŏng Colliery Line
90.4 0.9 Sinhoeryŏng 신회령 (新会寧) Closed
93.2 3.7 Kŭmsaeng 금생 (金生)
98.9 5.7 Koryŏngjin 고령진 (高嶺鎮)
104.3 5.4 Sinhakp'o 신학포 (新鶴浦) Sech'ŏn Line
107.2 2.9 Hakp'o 학포 (鶴浦)
116.6 9.4 Sinjŏn 신전 (新田)
123.0 6.4 Kanp'yŏng 간평 (間坪)
129.9 6.9 Sambong 삼봉 (三峰) Sangsambong 상삼봉 (上三峰)
133.1 3.2 Hasambong 하삼봉 (下三峰) Closed 1933
139.0 9.1 Chongsŏng 종성 (鍾城) Tongp'o Line
144.2 5.2 Soam 소암 (小岩) Closed 1944
147.2 8.2 Kangalli 강안리 (江岸里) Tonggwan 동관 (東關) Sŏngp'yŏng Line
153.1 5.9 Sugup'o 수구포 (水口浦)
159.8 6.7 Kangyang 강양 (江陽)
165.9 6.1 Namyang 남양 (南陽) Namyang Border Line
169.8 3.9 P'ungri 풍리 (豊利)
175.9 6.1 Sesŏn 세선 (世仙) Closed
180.4 4.5 Unsŏng 운성 (穏城)
185.9 5.5 P'ung'in 풍인 (豊仁)
195.5 9.6 Hwangp'a 황파 (黄坡)
205.1 9.6 Hunyung 룬융 (訓戎)
210.5 5.4 Hamyŏn 하면 (下面)
214.8 4.3 Saebyŏl 새졀 (-) Kyŏngwŏn 경원 (慶源)
222.1 7.3 Nongp'o 농포 (農圃)
225.9 3.8 Ryongdangri 룡당리 (龍洞里) Sŭngryang (承良)
234.3 8.4 Sin'gŏn 신건 (新乾) Kogŏnwŏn Line
244.9 10.6 Sinasan 신아산 (新阿山)
252.2 7.3 Songhak 송학 (松鶴) Ch'undu Line
258.1 5.9 Haksong 학송 (鶴松) Aoji 아오지 (阿吾地) Hoeam Line
266.8 8.7 Ch'ŏnghak 청학 (青鶴)
276.5 9.7 Sahoe 사회 (四会)
282.5 6.0 Hongŭi 홍의 (洪儀) Hongŭi Line
283.5 1.0 Mulgol 물골 (-)
289.6 6.1 Kuryongp'yŏng 구룡평 (九龍坪)
297.6 8.0 Ungsang 웅상 (雄尚)
308.1 10.5 Tongsŏnbong 동선봉 (東雄基)
309.9 12.3 Sŏnbong 선봉 (先鋒) Unggi 웅기 (雄基) Sŭngri Line
Paekhwa 백화 (-)
316.1 6.2 Kwan'gok 관곡 (寛谷)
325.1 9.0 Rajin 라진 (羅津) P'yŏngra Line, Rajin Port Line

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e Kokubu, Hayato, 将軍様の鉄道 (Shōgun-sama no Tetsudō), ISBN 978-4-10-303731-6
  2. ^ a b c d e The traffic and geography in North Korea: Hambuk Line (in Korean)
  3. ^ Japanese Government Railways, 鉄道停車場一覧 昭和12年10月1日現在(The List of the Stations as of 1 October 1937), Kawaguchi Printing Company, Tokyo, 1937, pp 498–501, 504–505 (Japanese)
  4. ^ 朝鮮総督府官報 (The Public Journal of the Governor-General of Korea), Shōwa No. 669, 28 March 1929 (in Japanese)
  5. ^ 朝鮮総督府官報 (The Public Journal of the Governor-General of Korea), Shōwa No. 1963, 26 July 1933 (in Japanese)
  6. ^ 朝鮮総督府官報 (The Public Journal of the Governor-General of Korea), 1 October 1933 (in Japanese)
  7. ^ a b 南満州鉄道株式会社全路線
  8. ^ Communist Logistics in the Korean War, 1995
  9. ^ Железнодорожные переговоры
  10. ^ "Khasan-Rajin line renovation". ITAR TASS. 2013-09-22.