Matheran toy train to become fully operational by early 2018
Since services resumed on Oct 30, the train has been running only between Aman Lodge and Matheran stationsUpdated: Nov 30, 2017 12:32 IST
To the delight of tourists, the popular toy train that runs to Mumbai’s favourite hill station, Matheran, is likely to become fully operational by early 2018.
The Central Railway (CR) partially resumed services on October 30, more than a year after the train was discontinued owing to two consecutive derailments. The 21-km stretch has four stations; namely, Matheran, Aman Lodge, Waterpoint and Neral. Currently, the train runs between Aman Lodge and Matheran so that tourists can reach Dasturi Point by vehicles.
Railway officials said the work was taking time as the stretch has a 127-degree curve. The CR has built 513km of retaining walls to protect the tracks and the train during landslide. In addition, a 732-km stone wall has been built along the 1,500 km of crash barrier.
The CR will also overhaul the entire narrow-gauge tracks at a cost of Rs11.25 crore.
“We did not have a complex safety structure until last year after the derailments. The train had been operating more or less without any change since its inception in 1907,” said Shubhranshu, chief safety officer of CR.
The CR is currently running six services with two locomotives (engines).
One more locomotive is currently being built at Parel workshop. The CR has also planned to get five more locomotives by next year.
The toy train has an 80% occupancy rate on weekdays and 100% on weekends. Residents have requested the CR officials to add more services on weekends to handle tourists.
First Published: Nov 30, 2017 12:31 IST