The Western Railway (WR) will run the first suburban train with automatic doors from Sunday. The doors have been installed in the women’s first-class compartment.
Depending on the response from commuters, automatic doors will then be installed in eight trains on the Western and Central Railway, said railway officials.
In a bid to prevent crimes, the WR has also commissioned the process of installing close circuit television (CCTV) cameras in the women’s compartment of three trains.
“The tendering process for CCTV installation has been initiated. It is likely to be completed within the next three to four months,” said a railway official.
At present, over 35 lakh passengers travel on the WR suburban section daily, of this at least 5% travel on the footboard during peak hours because of overcrowding. This will no longer be a possibility once the automatic doors are introduced.
Officials said the train will not move till all the doors are shut. On the other hand, the doors cannot be opened till the train comes to a complete stop.
These automatic doors will cost Rs4.5 crore for each train, while retrofitting all 205 trains will cost the railways about Rs1,500 crore.
Railway officials said the guard will have complete control of the door operations. The total time required for closing and opening of the doors is 2-2.5seconds.
To prevent increasing accidents because of overcrowding, Sunil Kumar Sood, general manager of Central Railway and WR, had demanded automatic doors be installed in local trains.
“We have requested the railway board to give us around Rs40 crore for installing automatic doors in eight rakes of both the railways. We are hoping to undertake work while converting the trains from 9-car to 12-car and 12-car to 15-car,” said Sood.