Deaths and injuries from train collisions or derailment in India have fallen by more than 84 per cent, a senior railway ministry official said today.
“Deaths from accidents, collisions or derailments in last 12 months i.e. October 2017 to September 2018, have come down to 40,” the official, requesting anonymity, said.
He said between October 2016 to September 2017, the death toll due to several reasons was 244.
“In last 12 months (October 2017-September 2018), only 56 people were injured as compared to 491 between October 2016-September 2017, which is an 89 per cent decrease,” he added.
Citing measures the railways has taken to improve its infrastructure, the official said, “In last six months i.e. between April 2018 to September 2018, the railways has laid, renewed and converted over 2,257 km of tracks on its routes.”
He said this was a 55 per cent increase in the rate of renewing, laying and conversion of tracks.
In the 2016-17 financial year, the railways renewed, converted and laid about 1,459 km of tracks.
“The punctuality score has increased from low levels of around 62 per cent in April to 74 per cent in September-end,” he added.
The official said the Konkan Railway has shown maximum improvement as 95 per cent of the trains were running on time in the zone.
The North Western Railway and Northern Frontier railway also posted punctuality figures of around 90 per cent.
“Ten out of the 17 rail zones have improved their on-time performance to 75 per cent,” the official said.
He said out of 17 zones, only three — West Central Railway, South Eastern Central Railway and Northern Railway — have trains with maximum delays and punctuality scores of 65 per cent and below.
The Indian Railways has installed automatic data loggers at 98 places across its routes, which became operational from April 1.
The railways is also acquiring a Vehicular Ultrasonic Flaw Detection (USFD) system to detect track faults at a faster pace. Currently, it is detected manually which takes a longer time to complete a particular route.