New Delhi, Apr 2: In a big achievement in terms of safety of passengers, the Indian Railways recorded less than 100 train accidents in the financial year 2017-18. Between April 1, 2017, and March 30 this year, only 73 accidents were recorded, which is 29 per cent less than the 104 accidents that were reported in the year 2016-2017. Earlier, Indian Railways used to record at least 1,000 accidents except for the year 1968-69 when the number of accidents fell to 908 for the first time in many years.
“During the last three years, the number of consequential train accidents has decreased from 135 in 2014-15 to 107 in 2015-16 and further to 104 in 2016-17. In the current year (April 1, 2017-Feb 28, 2018) the number of consequential train accidents has further reduced to 70, as compared to 99 in the corresponding period of the previous year,” said Minister of State for Railways Rajen Gohain in a written reply to Lok Sabha.
Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani said that the decrease in the number of accidents is because there is a strong emphasis being put on safety. He attributed the upgradation in the safety measures to the voluntary reporting system which allows each and every railway employee the power to anonymously report any lapse in safety on Indian Railways. Lohani also added that the casualty figures too had gone down with time. Reflecting on the same, it was observed that only 39 derailments have been recorded in 2017-18 as compared to the 68 derailments in the last fiscal year.
Railway Minister Piyush Goyal intends to keep up this spirit and has, hence, tabbed safety as his first priority. With that, a Rs. 7,267 crore was allocated to Indian Railways in 2018-2019 for safety in the Budget 2018-19. The huge amount allocated will look after the repair work, maintenance and track inspection. There’s an enormous Rs. 5, 334 crore uplift from the year 2017-18 to this year. Indian Railways is committed to providing safety of its passengers and hence its main priority is to remove the clogs in the existent functioning. Up-gradation of Railway tracks, elimination of unmanned level crossings, replacing traditional ICF coaches with LHB coaches, introduction of new signalling systems are some of the main features which Railways intends to look at.
Apart from the above mentioned features, the Indian Railways has also decided to use latest technology for track maintenance for further decreasing the number of accidents.