Wenzhou, China, Accident
One year ago: Workers carry out rescue operations after two carriages from a bullet train derailed and fell off a bridge in Wenzhou, Zhejiang province. Reuters

Grieving relatives of the victims of the high-speed train crash accident that killed 40 people in China gathered around at the site to lay flowers in memory of the victims.

Insisting on their right for privacy, mourners refused to talk to the press, and instead preferred to remain silent.

The crash caused a public outcry and many took to the web to blast their anger at the government, which has been accused of handling the aftermath of the crash wrongly.

The press, unusually also openly criticised the government, even revealing alleged attempt to stop them from writing negative comments about the regime.

For many in China, the crash of two high-speed trains near the eastern city of Wenzhou is emblematic of the problems linked to China's extremely fast development in the space of just 30 years, which many fear led developers and officials to cut corners, prioritising deadlines over public safety or the environment.

Trying to calm public anger, the government has insisted they now have things under control while adding that investigation proved that a mix of design flaws in signal equipment and human error caused the crash.

Soon after the accident, three top officials were fired, in an attempt by the regime to shift public opinion, but criticisms are still flawing. Many have questioned the official decision to burry the wreckage so soon after the accident, while other also complained the government call off the search for survivors too rapidly, especially after a two-year-old girl was found alive hours after the search was ordered to be ended.

Reports now call for greater transparency and accountability from authorities and on the popular social network Sina Weibo, users posted millions of messages questioning official explanations, the official death toll while others circulated amateur photographs and videos of the crash site.

The top item on CCTV website coverage of the crash was headlined, "Compensation of victims' families does not need to be the sooner, the better, what victims' families need is not money" but answers to their questions.

AP Television News footage showed people lighting candles and releasing lanterns during a vigil at a public square in Wenzhou city on Thursday night. Nearly 1,000 people attended the vigil and candles were arranged on the ground to form the words "appeal for truth."

Proving that the government is concerned about the public anger, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on Thursday held a rare public news conference at the crash site insisting that a thorough investigation was under way and that those found responsible for the crash would be severely punished.

"No matter if it was a mechanical fault, a management problem, or a manufacturing problem, we must get to the bottom of this," said Mr Wen during a rare media conference under the viaduct where four carriages plunged 100 feet during Saturday's crash. "If corruption was found to be behind this, we must handle it according to law and will not be soft. Only in this way can we be fair to those who have died."