The preliminary inquiry report into the derailment on April 10 of the Train No. 15228 Muzaffarpur-Yesvantpur Express will be submitted to the Railway Ministry within a month, S. K. Mittal, Commissioner of Railway Safety, Southern Circle, Bangalore, said on Monday.
One person was killed on the spot and 33 passengers injured in the accident that took place near the Chitheri– Mahendrawadi stations in the Arakkonam–Katpadi section of Chennai Division at around 5.50 a.m., approximately an hour and a half after the train left Chennai Central for Yesvantpur in Bangalore.
Mr. Mittal, who began his two-day statutory probe at the conference hall of the Divisional Railway Manager, Chennai, told reporters that the final report would be submitted in the stipulated six months as evidence gathered from the derailed coaches and the track at the site of the mishap as well as oral/written depositions had to be correlated to arrive at the cause.
The evidence collected from the Chitheri site included the extent and type of damage to the wheels, the coach position, the damage to the track as well as the stretch of about 300-400 metres immediately preceding the derailment spot.
The Commission on Monday began recording depositions from about 40 Railway employees across mechanical, electrical and safety and operations divisions as well as those from the public.
Among those who turned up to submit their depositions were maintenance personnel from Bihar, a TTE who took over duty in the AC-I coach from Chennai Central and gangmen attached to Southern Railway.
Frequent accidents to be looked into
When it was pointed out to Mr. Mittal that the Arakkonam-Chitheri-Katpadi was frequently witnessing accidents – in September 2011 a Chennai Beach-Vellore MEMU had rammed a stationary Arakkonam–Vellore passenger killing 10, while before that the derailment of 22 tankers of a goods train had disrupted services on the route – the Commissioner said that will also have to be looked into.
S. Anantharaman, Chief Safety Officer, Southern Railway and P. K. Mishra, DRM, Chennai were present.
Ambedkar birth anniversary
Southern Railway on Monday celebrated the 122nd birth anniversary of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar with various programmes.
Rakesh Misra, General Manager, Southern Railway, led the floral tributes at a function held to mark the occasion. Latha Priyakumar, Member, National Commission for Scheduled Castes, who was chief guest, presented prizes to employees and wards who had won essay and quiz contests.