Indian Railways: Over 22 trains affected by cattle collisions daily, data shows | So Good News


As the menace of cattle on the railway track continues to haunt the recently launched Vande Bharat trains in India, official data has shown that cattle collisions affected 200 trains in the first nine days of October itself. The figure shows 4,000 trains for the year 2022.

In the first nine days of October, 200 trains have been affected, taking the figure to 4,433 for the year so far.

Cattle collisions can cause serious damage to trains, delay them and even cause derailments.

Notably, the worst affected of them all is the Mumbai-Ahmedabad Vande Bharat Express train which was launched on October 1. The ‘nose’ of the train is now damaged due to three run-ins with cattle in the first nine days of October.

To avoid such accidents, Indian Railways officials had stated that they had cordoned off several areas around the tracks. But the officials also mentioned that it will be impossible to cover longer stretches due to residential areas and farms.

Indian Railways has also identified areas where these accidents occur more frequently and is in the process of completely fencing off the areas. According to the latest update, around 40% of the work has been completed.

Accident prone zone

According to information access to by PTI, the North Central Railway zone, which saw more than 6,500 of the 26,000 cases of cattle hit in 2020-21, is one of the worst-hit railway zones. It covers 3,000 km of track and hosts parts of the Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi-Howrah corridors.

It includes divisions like Agra, Jhansi and Prayagraj and is the gateway for trains from the east to reach the northern parts of India.

The identified stretches include sections of North Central Railways and Northern Railways –

-In Jhansi Division between Virangana Lakshmibai

-Gwalior Section, Prayagraj Division between Pt Deen Dayal Upadhyay

-Prayagraj Section, Moradabad Division between Alam Nagar and Shahjehanpur

-Lucknow Division between Alam Nagar and Lucknow

The Northern Railway zone recorded the highest number of cattle being run over — nearly 6,800 — in Moradabad and Lucknow divisions in Uttar Pradesh, Firozpur in Punjab, Ambala in Haryana and Delhi, officials said.

Vande Bharat train

Three of the five Vande Bharat trains pass through routes in the North Central Railway zone

“Vande Bharat trains were designed to ensure that there is no serious damage to them due to CROs. This is why these premium trains have replaceable cone-shaped cover in the front part which is made of fiber reinforced plastic to absorb the impact from a collision with cattle,” an official said.

This cover costs the Railways around 10,000 to 15,000 each and they are replaced within hours of a collision.

The national carrier has a basket of around 10 spare parts for these trains.

According to data provided by the railways, trains affected by cattle overruns rose from 360 in January to 635 in September, with more than 22 trains affected daily.

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