National

Driver’s timely action prevents head-on collision

People crowd the site where the Dehradun-Varanasi Janta Express derailed, about 35 km from Rae Bareli district on Friday. Photo: Rajeev Bhatt

People crowd the site where the Dehradun-Varanasi Janta Express derailed, about 35 km from Rae Bareli district on Friday. Photo: Rajeev Bhatt  

Had the train not been diverted, it would have hit the Ganga Gomti Express

If railway sources are to be believed, the train accident at Bachrawan railway station on Friday morning could have been much worse as another train was approaching the ill-fated Dehradun-Varanasi Janata Express when its driver realised that the brakes of the locomotive had failed. It was the result of the quick thinking of the train driver and the station superintendent that the train was diverted on a loop line which led to its derailment, thus averting a possible collision between two trains.

“The Ganga-Gomti Express was approaching from Rae Bareli when the Janata Express driver alerted the Bachrawan station in-charge using his walkie-talkie about the brake malfunction ... It was then decided to divert the train on loop line or thokar line, meant for handling emergencies, near the station to avert a possible bigger accident. As the Janata Express train was in speed, the impact due to derailment was severe causing major loss of lives,” said a senior railway official.

Shiv Mohan, 35, who was travelling in the first coach that suffered the most damage, said: “I realised that something was amiss ... It seemed as if the brakes had failed and both the driver and the guard were talking on the walkie-talkie and frantically signalling from the doors. It was at this moment that I jumped at the Bachrawan railway station where the train did not halt before the accident.”

Helpline numbers

A team of 10 doctors left for Rae Bareli, where most of the bodies have been kept, to carry out post-mortem examination.

The Railways have made several helpline numbers operational at Bachrawan, Dehradun, Lucknow, Varanasi, Pratapgarh, Rae Bareli, Haridwar and Bareilly for providing information about the injured passengers. The helpline numbers are: 09794845621 at Bachrawan; 0135-2624002 at Dehradun; 09794830973 at Lucknow; 9542-2503841 at Varanasi; 0534-2223830 at Pratapgarh; 0535-2211224 at Rae Bareli; 0134-226477 at Haridwar; and 0581-2258161 at Bareilly.

The State government has set up a toll-free helpline number 1800 180 5145.

Why you should pay for quality journalism - Click to know more

Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Feb 23, 2020 11:27:53 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/drivers-timely-action-prevents-headon-collision/article7016248.ece

Next Story