Hosur Train Derailment Bengaluru

‘Track defect a likely reason of accident’

Contrary to the main theory doing the rounds that boulders on the tracks could have caused the accident in the Bengaluru-Ernakulam Intercity Express on Friday morning, sources in the railways said that a more likely cause was a defect in the tracks.

While several people had claimed that it could be stones, the loco-pilot A.T. Fernandes has said there were no stones on the tracks.

Regular checks are carried out to spot defects in the tracks and fix them before trains go on them. A track defect means there could be a crack in the track or a difference in “track gauge” where the space between the tracks changes. A similar problem was being attended to at a place two kilometres from the spot but this particular spot had not been attended to. Three passengers, regulars on the route, to whom The Hindu spoke to said they had experienced an alarming shaking of the train at the spot where the accident occurred.

According to railway sources, the train was not overspeeding since the maximum speed for that stretch is 80 kmphr and the train was going at 75 kmphr. He said, “They were within the allowed speed limit”.

He also said that there was no issue of the locopilots being unfamiliar with the terrain. Mr. Fernandes, the locopilot and Subrahmanya, the assistant locopilot, are known as experienced hands and are thought of as having “a track record of safe piloting”.

An important point in the context of the accident was while that the number of trains are increased, there is no correspondening increase in track maintenance. “This route had four train a few years ago. Now, it has nine trains”, a source said.

Meanwhile, Chief Commissioner for Railway Safety S.K. Mittal also said that the locopilot has informed him that he had experienced a jerk and he had to apply emergency brakes. Mr. Mittal said that he would be examining the engine speed recorder to ascertain if train was overspeeding. “It is too early to say what caused the accident. Due to impact and momentum, tracks have been damaged.”

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Printable version | Jun 17, 2021 3:13:17 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/bangalore/track-defect-a-likely-reason-of-accident/article6891837.ece

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