Track deaths continue to haunt railways

Apart from dealing with angry commuters and infrastructure breakdowns,the increasing number of deaths and injuries on its tracks is among the biggest challenges for the suburban railways.

Written by Kalpana Verma | Mumbai | Published: February 7, 2009 1:40:53 am

Apart from dealing with angry commuters and infrastructure breakdowns,the increasing number of deaths and injuries on its tracks is among the biggest challenges for the suburban railways. In January alone,the tracks between Churchgate and Palghar had 121 casualties — 82 deaths and 39 injuries — among those crossing the tracks.

Half these incidents (45 accidents; 31 deaths and 14 injuries) happened in the Borivali section,which includes Dahisar,Kandivali ,Malad,Goregaon and Jogeshwari.

After Borivali,Vasai is the most accident-prone section. It includes Mira Road to Vaitarna station. In January,15 deaths and 6 injuries while crossing the tracks were reported in the area. In the same month,16 cases (9 deaths,7 injuries) were recorded in Andheri,14 cases in Bandra (8 deaths ,6 injured) and 10 cases in Mumbai Central (7 deaths and 3 injured).

Palghar,which includes Sapale to Palghar,is the area where minimum cases occurred. In January,the deaths and injuries were at 5 and 2 respectively. In Churchgate area (which includes Marine lines,Churni road and Grant Road), 7 deaths were recorded.

RPF sources said most of these cases occurred between January 1 and January 17. And this is despite a massive drive undertaken by WR against trespassers and construction of walls on the sides of tracks.

One stationmaster put the blame on short cuts and heavy rush. “At noon,such cases occur when people are in a relaxed mood. And in the evening,passengers are in a hurry to reach homes.”

Devendra Kasar,senior divisional security commissioner,RPF,said: “We are very strict this time. We have launched a drive against trespassers,which will run for a month. Passengers should understand that we are doing all these to save their lives. We are concentrating on the Borivali section.”

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