Railways nets 60,000 sq m of state mountain ranges to prevent landslides | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times
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Railways nets 60,000 sq m of state mountain ranges to prevent landslides

Jun 14, 2024 08:55 AM IST

These activities are part of the pre-monsoon works after the railways’ success last monsoon in preventing multiple rocks from sliding down onto the tracks

MUMBAI: Central Railway (CR) has extensively netted the Bhor and Thal ghats and mountain ranges on the Kalyan-Kasara/Karjat route to prevent rocks and boulders from falling on the railway tracks during the monsoon. This year 60,000 sq m of boulders have been netted as against 500 sq m last year. CR has also installed 450 m of Canadian fencing to prevent muck and slush from flowing onto the tracks. In 2023, only 40 m were fenced.

CR nets 60,000 sq m of ghats and mountain ranges to prevent landslide accidents
CR nets 60,000 sq m of ghats and mountain ranges to prevent landslide accidents

These activities are part of the pre-monsoon works after the railways’ success last monsoon in preventing multiple rocks from sliding down onto the tracks. “We have also created new catch drains of 1200 m before this monsoon; last year, they stood at a mere 160 m,” said a CR official.

CR has also extended last year’s 44 m of portals or steel roof-like structures along the tunnels to 170 this year. “This is at crucial locations to prevent rocks and boulders from falling on the tracks before the tunnel,” said another CR official. “We have doubled the dynamic rock fall barriers from 300 m to 650 m this year, which will catch the detached rock mass. At 13 locations, sumps have been installed to catch falling boulders.”

In addition, railway ‘hill gangs’ have been pressed into service to perform duties like tunnel-sounding, extensive scanning of the ghat section and cleaning of waterways and vegetation on the ghat sections. The gang members walk at least six to eight km a day in groups of two to three to identify problems on the hills. The rail authorities said that these measures were planned and executed in consultation with experts from IIT Mumbai and Konkan Railway Corporation Ltd.

Western Railway is likewise carrying out its monsoon preparedness work, to survey which officials visited Vasai Yard on June 12. “The work to improve the drainage system at Vasai Yard is being undertaken,” said chief PRO Vineet Abhisekh. “The pre-monsoon preparations include stocking dewatering pumps, cleaning of the central and side drains, desilting of culverts and track-circuiting of the signalling department.”

Based on the past history of waterlogging between Vasai and Nalasopara, rail officials have taken up works of gated openings in protection walls for the one-way discharge of rain water. At Vasai Yard, the staff was asked to screen ballasts to improve cross-drainage after choked ballasts were observed at some locations.

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