November 29, 2021 6:45:58 pm
Charging sockets, CCTV cameras, fire detection systems, and dynamic route maps on LCD screens are part of the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation’s (DMRC) ‘refurbishment’ of the first of 70 trains that were inducted as part of Phase I of the Delhi Metro from 2002 onwards. These trains have been showing signs of wear and tear.
While the newer trains came with these facilities, the older ones had to be retrofitted to include these in a ‘mid-life’ refurbishment exercise, according to DMRC officials. The first such refurbished train, one from the Blue Line that connects Dwarka Sector 21 with Noida Electronic City and Vaishali, was unveiled at the Yamuna Bank Depot on Monday and is likely to be rolled out soon.
In addition to the mobile and laptop charging sockets, CCTV cameras, and fire detection system, work done on the first train includes repairing the floors that had developed cracks and undulations, a fresh coat of paint to fix scratches and dents, and upgraded electrical panels. The older trains had route maps on stickers, and half of these maps on the trains are being converted to LCD screens with dynamic maps.
The average lifespan of the trains is around 30 years, according to DMRC officials, and those that were pressed into service between 2002 and 2007, under Phase 1, have completed over 14 years on the tracks.
A contract has been awarded for the refurbishment of 10 trains, at a cost of around Rs 40 to 45 crore, and work on these is likely to be completed by September next year. Work on seven of these trains will be done at the Yamuna Bank Metro Depot, which is the depot for the Blue Line, while the remaining three trains will be refurbished at the Shastri Park Metro Depot that functions as the depot for the Red Line.
A tender has been floated for the remaining 60 trains that are to be spruced up. These are the trains that operate on the Red, Blue and Yellow Lines.
Although inspections and cleaning of the interiors and equipment are carried out periodically, this is the first such ‘refurbishment,’ DMRC officials said. The first train took around two months to refurbish, and the remaining trains are likely to take around a month of work per train.
DMRC has a fleet of around 355 trains. They cover around 400-600 km per day, in around 16 to 18 hours of service. The refurbishment is meant to bring to the older trains the look and systems that are in newer coaches introduced in DMRC’s more recent expansions.
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