S. Vijay Kumar
Owing to effective management of train operations
MADURAI: The Madurai division of the Southern Railway has achieved an all time high of 99.2 per cent in punctuality rate. The record performance is an outcome of a six-point strategy devised for effective management of train operations.
According to the Additional Divisional Railway Manger, M. Suyambulingam, a special team was formed to closely analyse the critical parameters that affected the running time of trains. After a period of time, six steps were taken to achieve and maintain high levels of punctuality.
First, instructions were given to operate all express trains at the maximum permissible speed (MPS) while it was 10 per cent less (than the MPS) earlier. This facilitated trains to reach en route stations ahead of the scheduled arrival giving more time for passengers to board.
Exclusive passenger locomotives (WDP) with high power hauling capacity were introduced on select trains, which helped in better speed on gradient sections.
Quick negotiation of curves was made possible by improving the track resilience.
The lighting system in signals were modernised to enhance visibility in adverse weather conditions.
Mr. Suyambulingam said maintenance of vital installations through periodical overhauling was ensured. Computerised charting of train operations had paved the way for better planning in arranging crossing for trains.
"We have proposed to reduce the running time of all express trains between Madurai and Chennai Egmore by thirty minutes in the next time table. Engineers were focussing on eliminating speed restrictions on critical locations by improving safety standards for operation of high speed trains," he added.