From 28 March 2019, instead of conventional ICF (Integral Coach Factory) design coaches, train number 22909/22910 Valsad - Puri Express as well as train number 19055/19056 Valsad - Jodhpur Express have started to run with LHB coaches.
Indian Railways takes another step to provide improved facilities for passengers’ comfort. In a bid to make the travel experience more comfortable and convenient for passengers, Indian Railways has started operating two more trains with Linke Hofmann Busch (LHB) coaches. From 28 March 2019, instead of conventional ICF (Integral Coach Factory) design coaches, train number 22909/22910 Valsad – Puri Express as well as train number 19055/19056 Valsad – Jodhpur Express have started to run with LHB coaches. The trains consist of AC 2 tier, AC 3 tier, sleeper, and II class coaches. For the first time, the LHB design coaches were introduced in 2000 on the Indian Railways network and the first indigenous coach was put into service in the year 2003.
Based on German technology, the LHB design coaches are safer than ICF design coaches. The anti-climbing features on these coaches make them safer in case of an accident. Other than being safer, the LHB design coaches are lighter in weight, have higher speed potential as well as higher carrying capacity. Additionally, these coaches also have increased codal life along with better safety features.
Earlier this year, Indian Railways created the record for manufacturing more LHB coaches in the past two years than it did in the first 17 years since the introduction of such coaches. As per the data provided by Indian Railways, between 2017-2018 and till December 2018, more than 5500 LHB design coaches were produced. From the year 2001 till the end of March 2016, a total of 4020 LHB coaches were manufactured. In the year 2016-2017, 1470 LHB coaches in total were manufactured by various coach factories.
Piyush Goyal chaired Railway Ministry is fast replacing the old ICF design coaches. Moreover, the production of ICF coaches has already been stopped now. The ministry aims to replace all the old conventional coaches with LHB coaches over the next few years.