Mumbai commuters, your Churchgate-Virar slow local train to get faster
The commissioner of railway safety (CRS) has set a speed limit of 70kmph for Bombardier locals on the corridor, considering its speed, braking distance and faster accelerationmumbai Updated: Mar 28, 2018 10:27 IST
Here’s some good news for commuters on the slow line of the Churchgate-Virar corridor of the western railway (WR). Soon, your trains will start moving faster.
Reason: the new-age Bombardier locals, obtained under the second phase of Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP), will soon be able to move at a speed of 90kmph, from the current 70kmph, as the WR will switch to a four-aspect signaling system for the line.
The WR has five different makes of locals in its fleet-- Bombardier, Siemens, Medha, Alstrom and BHEL locals -- with Bombardier being a majority. The commissioner of railway safety (CRS) has set a speed limit of 70kmph for Bombardier locals on the corridor, considering its speed, braking distance and faster acceleration. This has, in turn, adversely affected the operations on the line. The speed limit for other types of trains is 80-100 kmph.
So what has changed? Last year, the WR converted its 86 signals on the slow corridor from three-aspect (with three colour-coding – green-yellow-red) to four aspect (with four colour-coding – green-yellow-yellow-red). As the four colours give a motorman more time to speed and a warning to prevent accidents, the WR authorities have now applied to the CRS of the western circle for speed relaxation for Bombardier locals on the slow corridor.
Explaining how the signaling system will work, a motorman, who did not wish to be identified, said, “In three aspect signals, we are forced to slow down on seeing the yellow light, knowing the next will be red
There is a chance of signal passing at danger, which is considered as equivalent to an accident if a motorman forgets that next signal will be red. In the new system, with two yellow lights, the motorman gets some more time to speed and cover the distance after seeing the first yellow light itself. He also gets a warning that the next light will be red, preventing accidents.”
The WR officials said adopting the new signaling system was necessary to improve speed and punctuality on slow track. “We will be able to increase the speed of Bombardier locals to 90kmph from the existing 70kmph,” Mukul Jain, the top boss of Mumbai division of WR.
Under the second phase of Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP-2), the railway authorities procured 72 new-age locals fitted with electric controlling system developed by Bombardier Transportation. In 2016, the CRS allowed the locals to speed up to 110 kmph beyond Virar.