Indian Railways is taking the help of a US-based railroad research organisation to study the impact of higher freight traffic load on tracks.
Former railway board chairman JP Batra said Transport Technology Centre (TTC) of the US would do the study jointly with the Research Design and Standard Organisation to assist the railway in increasing load-carrying capability on the tracks, increasing the wagons' speed and related matters.
The study would also focus on the exact impact of increase in axle load. Railways in developed countries including South Africa, Canada, Australia have also adopted the similar method to shift to higher axle load traffic.
Railways has allowed higher loadings in wagons by increasing the per axle load from 20 tons to 22.9 tons on certain routes in the recent past.
Pratap Srivastav, additional member (Planning) said, "we are planning to further increase the per axle load to 25 tons from 22.9 tons and certain routes have been identified to run the wagons. This will help railway to carry 15 per cent more goods in our freight trains than the existing load."
Srivastav said with the increase of production in steel, iron ore, coal, finished steel it was necessary to increase the axle load to cater to the growing transport demand of the industry. Besides the increased axle load there is also a need to increase the number of w agons to carry maximum goods.
The finished steel from the eastern region is likely to flow to northern, western and southern regions.