Western Railway (WR) plans to enforce several safety measures during fiscal 2012-2013 to bring down the growing number of accidents on tracks. Some of these include restraining people from crossing tracks by constructing walls, barricades, increasing the height of all platforms to 95cm above the railway track level, prosecuting trespassers, and construction of around 15-16 FOBs (foot over-bridges).
Over 20,000 commuters have died on Mumbai's railway tracks in the past five years.
The WR suburban section currently has 69 railway and 22 civic FOBs along the along a 60km stretch between Churchgate and Virar. "We have expedited our FOB construction work. The construction work has been expedited on some vulnerable spots like Jogeshwari and Kandivli. These FOBs are targeted to commission within four months," said Kumar.
Some of the 15 planned or under-construction FOBs are at Lower Parel, Dadar (3), Matunga, Vile Parle, Kandivli (2), Bhayander and at Naigaon subway. WR has also tied up with four private hospitals between Dahisar and Virar, known to be a highly accident-prone stretch. Since there is no government hospital nearby, the victims are currently taken to Bhagawati Hospital in Borivli, which is a waste of valuable time in case of an emergency.
"We have tied up with hospitals in Virar, Vasai, Nalla Sopara and Mira Bhyander in order to ensure quick treatment to passengers on this stretch. The expenses of taking the victim to hospital, and treatment, will be borne by WR," informed Mahesh Kumar, general manager, Western Railway at the inauguration of the 57th railway week exhibition on Friday.