East-Central Railway (ECR) has not been able to install fog safety devices in its trains since 2014, according to a report. This year also the ECR will depend on firecrackers to deal with low visibility due to fog during the winter.
According to a report in Hindi Daily Prabhat Khabar, a plan to install fog safety devices in trains was made by the Railway Board in 2014. Under the plan, the devices were install in 1018 trains of Norther Railway, North-Eastern Railway and North-Western Railway. However, no such devices have been installed in any train of the ECR. Now the ECR trains have to depend on firecrackers as it becomes almost impossible for drivers to check the signals on foggy days, according to the report.
The report says that firecrackers are used to control train signals in Danapur rail division. The sound of first firecracker signals the loco pilot to stop the train and reduce the speed of the train to 15 km/h. The sound of the second firecracker indicates that the train has reached near the signal while the sound of the third cracker indicated the loco pilot to drive the train at 15km/h up to the next 1.5 km. This process causes a lot of delays.
On Wednesday, fog enveloped the entire northern India. Several trains, including the Rajdhani Express to Patna, were delayed by many hours due to the fog.
The temperature also dipped in many parts of the country. In Delhi, the minimum recorded temperature was 9.7 degree Celsius. According to the weathermen, the temperature is expected to dip further in coming days. There will also be a spike in pollution levels.
PTI reported that as many as 18 flights and 50 northbound trains were delayed due to the fog. The visibility in Delhi recorded at 800 metres at 5:30 AM, which dropped to 200 metres three hours later. The relative humidity was recorded at 98 per cent.”This is the season’s first fog cover…the skies are expected to remain clear during the day and the maximum temperature is expected to hover around 28 degrees Celsius,” weather official told PTI.
(With agency inputs)