Railways to screen short films to curb trespassing on tracks

On an average,five people die every day while crossing tracks on the city’s suburban railway system.

Written by PRIYAL DAVE | Mumbai | Published:October 21, 2013 1:50 am

In a bid to save lives lost during trespassing Mumbai’s suburban railway system that carries 7.5 million commuters daily,Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC) plans to reach out to commuters through the audio-visual medium by showing short films at multiplexes,schools,colleges,housing societies and slums along railway tracks. The short films in English,Hindi and Marathi are expected to be ready by early 2014.

Rampant line crossing,attributed both to habit as well as lack of infrastructure,claim on an average five lives daily on Central and Western railways. Line crossing,also referred to as trespassing,claimed 1,979 lives in 2012 and 2,023 in 2011. Trespassing accounts for more than 50 per cent of accidental deaths recorded by the Government Railway Police (GRP). This year till May,773 people died while trespassing.

According to the GRP officers,victims of line crossing often suffer from grievous injuries and in most cases,they are incapacitated for life.

A senior railway officer said,“MRVC is working on preventing deaths due to trespassing. In addition to a trespass control project which is being implemented at some stations,we are also working on using the audio-visual medium to sensitise people to opt for safe options such as Foot Over Bridges (FOBs) and skywalks.”

Under the audio-visual campaign,the public sector undertaking plans to have two short films; a one-minute film to be shown at multiplexes and a five-minute film for schools,colleges,housing societies and slums. MRVC also hopes to rope in celebrities from sports and the film industry to be a part of the campaign. The films aim to encourage commuters to use FOBs and subways instead of crossing railway tracks.

In addition to the films,MRVC also plans to display banners,posters and pamphlets along the side of tracks,especially in areas dotted with slums.

The films are being made under the World Bank funded Mumbai Urban Transport Project phase 2A.

MRVC soon plans to start work of constructing FOBs and skywalks at Kanjurmarg and Thane stations. In its study on trespassing,the PSU had identified Vasai Road,Nalasopara,Borivali,Kandivli,Bhayander,Dadar (CR and WR),Kurla,Kanjurmarg,Thane,Thakurli and Kalyan as hotspots for trespassing.

A third approach under a plan by MRVC is to use behavioural measures like staccato honking and painting of railway sleepers at the six WR stations identified under the study.

priyal.dave@expressindia.com

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