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Train services in Mumbai hit after fire in signal cabins

Mumbai, Wed, 18 Apr 2012 ANI

Mumbai, Apr 18 (ANI): A massive fire in a signal panel of the Central Railway track disrupted local train services in Mumbai on Wednesday, leaving hundreds of passengers stranded on platforms.

S. Malegoakar, the chief public relations officer of Central Railway, told mediapersons here, that rail traffic was hit due to the fire, as it had damaged equipment.

"At around 12, last night, there was an incident of fire at the signalling cabins on the route of central trains plying between Kurla and Vidya Vihar. However, the fire was brought under control within half an hour with the help of fire fighters.

'We are trying to find out the reasons for the mishap, but signalling equipments are badly damaged due to the fire, which has adversely affected the train traffic between Kurla and Vidya Vihar. As a precautionary measure, we stopped traffic till 3.30 in morning," said Malegoakar.

Malegoakar added that it would take them around three to four days to fix the problem and urged commuters to cooperate with the authorities.

"We are going to take three to four days to resolve the problem. We request passengers to cooperate with the railway authorities. The railway administration is trying to run as many trains as possible," he added.

The trains are, for the time being, piloted manually causing a delay of several hours, till the equipment is repaired.

Meanwhile, stranded passengers expressed anger and complained about the authorities not making any announcement or alternative arrangements.

"Passengers are facing a lot of problems. We have heard about a fire in the transformer but services have resumed. They are not even announcing anything," said Arun Chitnis, a passenger.

Rush-hour trains of city's 150-year-old rail network are crammed with thrice the number of passengers than they are designed to carry.

Local trains are considered to be the life line of Mumbai with a total of seven million people commuting every day.

Out of those, around four million people commute daily through the main Central line.

The central line connects people from several key suburbs of Mumbai like Kalyan, Dombivali, Thane to the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), Central Mumbai.

Trains plying between Mumbai and Pune were also affected. (ANI)

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