China’s railways carry nearly 25 million during holiday

China’s railways carried nearly 25 million passengers during the three-day Dragon Boat Festival holiday, up 7.5 percent year-on-year, statistics from the Ministry of Railways showed Sunday.

At least 7 million passengers traveled by rail on June 22, marking the daily high during the holiday, according to the figures.

Most of the passengers were students heading for hometowns or holiday travelers to scenic spots, the ministry said.

To cope with the travel rush, the railway authorities arranged 894 additional trains and stepped up measures to ensure safe transport.

The Dragon Boat Festival, also called Duanwu Festival, is traditionally celebrated on the fifth day of the fifth month on the Chinese lunar calendar.

The festival commemorates the famous ancient Chinese poet Qu Yuan. Chinese people prepare and eat zongzi, or leaf-packed glutinous rice dumplings, drink wine and race dragon boats on the day. The festival fell on Saturday this year.