The new age Bombardier rake, brought to Mumbai in October 2013 but not inducted into the Western Railway (WR) fleet, was finally flagged off on Wednesday after approval from the Railway Board.
The debut train left the Churchgate Railway Station at 11.32 am from platform number 2 for Borivali, at an average speed of 80 kmph on the slow lines.
The Bombardier rake, built in Chennai, arrived in the city in October 2013. The rake will be seen running along with white and purple Siemens rakes fleet in Mumbai’s suburban section.
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It made a total of eight trips on Wednesday, including two on the fast track. “The Railways now plan to run the Bombardier rake train at a speed of 110 kmph,” said an official.
Since its arrival from Chennai, the rake’s trials and tests were repeatedly postponed. The rake has one-of-its-kind coaches with stainless steel sidewalls, along with the same material in fluted panels for the roof.
It has aluminum composite interior panelling for inside walls and roof. It also has a roof-mounted forced ventilation system which will supply 16,000 cubic m/hr fresh air.
Prabhat Sahai, the Managing Director and Chairman of Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC), who was present during the debut run of the rake, said, “The Bombardier rake is designed by keeping in mind its user-friendly aspects. It ensures comfortable commuting for passengers.
Although it does not have the Automatic Sliding Door (ASD) provision, its doors are of straight sidewalls, which can be easily slided. It is light in weight, bearing user-friendly locks, latches and maintenance-free rollers.”
“We will improve it further based on the feedback we receive from commuters. People can send their feedback directly to us via email,” added Sahai. Dasika Samal (20), a student, said, “I am happy to board the Bombardier train. The seats are quite comfortable. I am glad to see the technological improvements made by the Indian Railways.”
Jagruti Rahate (34), a home-maker who used the train on Wednesday, said the grab poles were better than the ones in the regular locals.”