Misuse of chain pulling causes much delay

Misuse of the inter-communication chains, alias alarm chains, on the mail, express, and passenger trains is affecting punctuality and causing headache to Railways as it leads to operational loss.

As many as 293 people were apprehended by the Railway Protection Force (RPF) till June this year for pulling alarm chains on trains without valid reasons and ₹1,45,900 was collected as penalty. In the same period in 2018, 275 cases were registered.

The chains are provided for passengers facing safety or security issues to communicate to the guard and loco pilot.

The use of the alarm chain without sufficient and reasonable cause is a crime under Section 141 of Railways Act, 1989. The 1.6 cases daily in the division indicates that passengers resort to chain pulling for trivial and emotional reasons. The delay caused by alarm-chain pulling is three to four times more than braking by loco-pilots, according to Railways.

According to the RPF, the alarm chain can be pulled by rail users for medical emergency, fire on board, boarding with an elderly or differently abled person, and security emergencies such as robbery and dacoity in Naxal-affected areas.

But, it is misused for helping delayed co-passengers board the train; to collect mobile phones that fall out of train owing to carelessness; to aid passengers who get down to purchase food/water at stations and are unable to board train in time; and for passengers who misses the destination and those who forget luggage.


Under the Railway Act, those found misusing the alarm chain faces imprisonment for a term which may extend up to one year or with fine which may extend up to ₹1,000, or with both.

The RPF has launched a special programme to contain the menace. Awareness campaigns are also on.

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Printable version | May 7, 2021 6:32:53 PM |

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