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Suburban train services badly hit

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Off track: With tracks submerged at several places, train services in and around Chennai were affected on Thursday.
Off track: With tracks submerged at several places, train services in and around Chennai were affected on Thursday.

S.Vydhianathan

CHENNAI: Movement of mainline and suburban trains both in Chennai Egmore and Central were badly affected due to incessant rains in the city on Thursday.

Departure of trains was delayed by more than 30 to 60 minutes as tracks were heavily waterlogged. An official of the Chennai Division said rainwater in and around Egmore and Central stations flooded the track making it difficult to operate the train services.

Trains could not be started till water receded from the track. They had to pump out water from the track to run the services.

Apart from delayed departure, in many places trains had to run at a minimum speed, especially when they were moving on bridges as the flow of water in many canals in the city was heavy.

Suburban services between Tambaram and Beach were also severely hit due to rains. The official said EMUs had to move at a snail pace between Guindy and St.Thomas Mount as tracks in some points between these two stations were submerged. Though the administration had made provisions to prevent the flooding, they did not function due to continuous rains.

But the suburban services came in handy for Chennai commuters as EMU services maintained without any disruption through out the day though there was delay in running the services. Commuters using the Egmore railway station had a tough time reaching the station as roads leading to it were water-logged. Most EMU trains were however running on time, commuters said.

MRTS train services from Velachery to Beach enjoyed good patronage. M.Geetha, a commuter, said she took the MRTS train to reach Central station as the roads were jammed and the train would save her time considerably.

However, with many of the stations yet to be constructed fully and many a stations having leaky roofs, the platforms and stairs remained wet and slippery. Due to power cuts, the escalators and lifts did not work and the stations plunged in darkness. Stations such as Mandaveli and Kasturba Nagar were in a very bad shape.

According to Southern Railway press release, despite heavy rains the administration was able to operate all main line and EMU services. Though trains from the south arrived behind schedule due to heavy overnight rains they all reached Chennai Egmore. There was no cancellation or rescheduling of train services, the release added.

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