Electric loco hauled passenger and goods trains is all set to become a reality on the Villupuram — Vellore broad gauge section falling within the limits of Tiruchi Railway Division.
With electrification works in the 152-km Villupuram — Vellore section having been completed, the Commissioner of Railway Safety (CRS) is scheduled to inspect the segment on May 14.
The safety clearance from the CRS is mandatory prior to throwing open the electrified section for operation of passenger and freight trains hauled by electric locomotives.
Railway sources told The Hindu that the CRS, Southern Circle, Bangalore S.K. Mittal will carry out a two-day inspection on this electrified section on May 14 and 15. Accompanied by top railway officials, the CRS will commence the inspection from Katpadi to Villupuram on May 14.
A speed trial test would be done the next day using a special train hauled by an electric locomotive on May 15.
The Villupuram — Vellore section is one among the major broad gauge sections falling within the jurisdiction of Tiruchi Railway Division.
The electrification works were carried out as part of the gauge conversion work from Villupuram to Vellore and completed at a cost of around Rs. 190 crore, the sources said. The Central Organisation for Railway Electrification (CORE), Chennai Project Unit, was entrusted with the responsibility of electrifying the section.
As part of the electrification project, two power substations were established — one at Arni Road and the other at Thandarai.
Power substations are already functioning at Villupuram Junction and near Katpadi Junction.
A senior CORE official said the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation Limited had begun to provide power supply to the Arani Road substation.
Electrification would improve acceleration of trains, say officials adding that some of goods trains bound for upcountry destinations from central and southern regions could take the electrified route in the long run to avoid the congested route via Chennai.