South Western Railway (SWR) has taken all out efforts for preparedness in the monsoon season, which is the most challenging season in train operations in Ghat sections. As the monsoons have already arrived, all planned safety works in the Ghat section between Castle Rock and Kulem section of Hubballi Division have been taken up. As all passenger trains except very few special trains are not running now, no disruption of train services was needed for this maintenance.
- Special attention has been paid to catch water drain cleaning and inspection of cuttings.
- During the month of May and June, Utility Track Vehicles (UTV) machine blocks are being operated regularly in the Ghat section between Castle Rock and Kulem.
- It has ensured removal of 2000 Sleepers from side drains making them effective to cater to the water flow in the ensuing monsoons and preventing overflow of water onto the track and endangering the safety of track.
- By ensuring smooth flow of drainage water, the steepest gradient in ghat section has been cleared which addresses the problem of rain water overflowing.
- Rehabilitation work on the 8 minor bridges on the ghat section between Londa – Miraj and Londa Vasco-da-gama section could also be taken up and these bridges have now been rebuilt/rehabilitated effectively & efficiently and ready for safe running of trains.
- As a precautionary measure 1000 nos. sand bags have been kept as standby at Caranzol, Dudsagar and Sonalium as monsoon reserves.
- Shri Arvind Malkhede, Divisional Railway Manager (DRM), Hubballi is monitoring the work done by the Track maintenance departments along with Branch officers of the divisions.
- In addition, 1700 MT of Rail scarp lying in the cutting, valleys and high embankment location was trucked out and condemned for further disposal in the ghat sections.
Shri A. K. Singh, General Manager, South Western Railway said that though it needed mobilization of resources and man power in testing times, Railway team has managed this and taking up these works in lockdown was very beneficial for passenger train services as it eliminated detention/cancellation of passenger trains which was otherwise needed.
- In view of Lockdown, Railway could carry out replacing of Sleepers at 11 Level Crossing (LC) gates.
- Due to heavy road traffic on these gates, getting the District Commissioners approval and diversion of road traffic in normal course is long process causing inconvenience to the Road and Rail users.
- During lockdown, maintenance work at LC Gates – work of removal of check rails, paver blocks, excavation of 400 to 500 mm, replacement of sleepers, rails and PWay fittings could be taken up and completed.
- Work on caution orders restricting speed of train in the range of 20-30 kmph were attended by replacing perished sleepers and missing P Way fittings, ballast cushions was replenished.
The workers are working day and night to ensure smooth operations of rail services once lockdown is lifted. All track maintainer staff have been provided with safety equipment to safeguard against the Covid-19 virus. They are also being counseled by branch officers to maintain social distancing, wear face masks and take precautions to prevent the spread of Covid-19 virus.
Source: South Western Railway-Press Release