Indian Railways in talks with Delhi govt to ply Oxygen Express trains

By: |
April 24, 2021 1:30 AM

Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh have also requested the Railways to transport oxygen tankers from various plants across the country to their respective states.

Each tanker of the 'Oxygen Express' trains can carry around 16 tonne of medical oxygen and travel at a speed of around 65 kmph.Each tanker of the 'Oxygen Express' trains can carry around 16 tonne of medical oxygen and travel at a speed of around 65 kmph.

The Railways is in talks with the Delhi government for transportation of liquid medical oxygen by Oxygen Express trains as the national capital faces an acute crisis of medical oxygen shortage and worsening health condition of Covid-19 patients.

Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh have also requested the Railways to transport oxygen tankers from various plants across the country to their respective states.

“We have received a request from the Delhi government today that they would like to have a few Oxygen Express services,” Suneet Sharma, chairman & CEO, Railway Board, said on Friday. As most of the generation of LMO takes place in eastern India, Railways are working out the details and have told the Delhi government to keep the tankers ready. “We have our wagons in place, so are the ramps at different locations in the NCR region and we expect this movement to start shortly. We will likely get the oxygen from Rourkela and are coordinating with the Delhi government very closely,” Sharma said.

Each tanker of the ‘Oxygen Express’ trains can carry around 16 tonne of medical oxygen and travel at a speed of around 65 kmph. The Railways are facing major challenges of transporting LMO, as this kind of movement has not been carried out before. Most of the liquid oxygen is being produced in the eastern part of the country, in places like Rourkela, Bhilai, Bokaro and Vizag which entails moving these tankers on railway wagons across the country, through difficult terrain – heights, ghats and tunnels.

While UP is requisitioning oxygen from the Bokaro steel plant and the Jamnagar refinery in Gujarat, the AP Government has requested for oxygen to be moved from Angul in Odisha. The wagons have been identified as also the ramps from where tankers will be carried to Angul and then come back with oxygen. Following the government of Maharashtra’s request on April 15 for transporting LMO tankers by rail, the first ‘Oxygen Express’ train travelling from Mumbai to Vizag and return will reach Nagpur on Friday night while a similar train headed for UP will reach Lucknow from Bokaro on Saturday.

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