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Temperature variations, dense fog slows down trains on CR

Oct 19, 2023 08:24 AM IST

Services on Mumbai's Central Railway were briefly affected twice on Wednesday due to foggy weather and track maintenance. Trains were running 15 minutes late but there were no cancellations. Railway engineers carried out preventive blocks for track maintenance due to changes in weather conditions. CR authorities are providing GPS trackers to staff for real-time checking of tracks.

Mumbai: Services on Central Railway (CR) were briefly affected twice on Wednesday. In the morning hours, suburban trains between Kasara/Karjat to Kalyan sections were affected due to foggy weather. During the day, CR authorities carried out preventive blocks for track maintenance which also affected train services on the main and Harbour lines.

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According to CR officials, the fog covered several stretches of areas in the far suburbs of Mumbai’s metropolitan region. On the Vasind-Titwala route, foggy weather affected train movement from 6.30am to 9am, while on the Karjat-Badlapur route, the fog affected train services from 5.30am to 9am.

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“Dense fog creates low visibility which impacts the train services. Hence the main line suburban trains were running late by 15 minutes during this period,” said a CR official.

However, there were no train cancellations. The rail officials said apart from fog - usually occurring during October when temperatures vary- it gets hot during the day and cold at night, which also affects the condition of rail tracks.

The track men who physically walk on tracks found abnormalities in the condition of tracks at a few locations like Byculla, Sion, Vashi, Asangaon and Badlapur due to changes in weather conditions. “Due to the surrounding temperature variations, we had to undertake a 20-minute block for destressing of tracks to keep its parameters normal. These preventive works were taken up between 11am to 1pm,” said Shivraj Manaspure, chief PRO, CR.

Railway engineers stated that these blocks cannot be carried out at night. Destressing is a process of conditioning the steel rail so it can cope better with temperature extremes.

CR authorities are also providing GPS trackers to its staff for real-time checking of tracks. “Recognising that tracks undergo expansion and compression due to temperature fluctuations; we have intensified efforts to detect and address rail flaws promptly. Preventative action will minimise the risk of rail fractures and potential accidents. We have equipped track men with GPS trackers, ensuring thorough foot patrols for fault detection,” said another CR official. This technology provides real-time tracking of patrol routes and movement of track men thus enabling immediate response to any anomalies. The CR have provided 666 GPS trackers to their staff here in the Mumbai Division.

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