Two major train mishaps were averted in the Asansol division of Eastern Railway near Panagarh station involving the Howrah-Ranchi Shatabdi Express and the Asansol-Howrah Intercity Express on Monday.
Five feet of rail track was found to be unfastened between Panagarh and Rajbandh stations in the up-main line of Asansol-Howrah section seconds after the Howrah-Ranchi Shatabdi Express safely passed by the stretch, railway sources said.
A loud sound was heard and smoke was seen emanating from the track as the last compartment of Ranchi-bound Shatabdi Express passed by.
As railway personnel rushed to the spot they saw five feet of rail tracks had came off the ground, the sources said. Railway officials were enquiring whether the tracks had come off due to the friction caused by the bogie.
In another incident, the timely act of a seriously injured motorman saved the lives of Asansol-Sealdah Intercity Express passengers as the train was halted at Panagarh station in the Durgapur-Bardhaman section of Asansol division, sources said.
The alert motorman stopped the train at the station despite falling unconscious after being hit by a stray stone when the train was approaching the station, they said.
The motorman AK Banerjee, who fell unconscious at the platform with his wrist smashed, was admitted to a local hospital at around 8:35 am.
Besides the Sealdah-bound train, movement of other trains were also disrupted for two and half hours in the Asansol division, they added.