MUMBAI: Central Railways’ (CR) suburban section is just months away from getting fully-functional escalators on every station, as was proposed in budget in February.
A massive work for 214 escalators has begun in CR. 40 escalators will be ready by June this year under the first phase. This is a part of the safety measure that the railways has taken since a massive stampede at Elphinstone Road on September 29 killed around 27 people.
Senior CR officials said that right now, 34 escalators have been commissioned for public use. “We shall be constructing 40 escalators before monsoon. Testing and other technical works of many of these are underway,” said SK Jain, Divisional Railway Manager (Mumbai), CR.
These escalators will be for both, climbing up and down, unlike the existing system of escalators for climbing up onto the foot overbridge (FOBs). The authorities have taken up job of building 40 escalators at stations where existing space is enough for creating landing for them.
Authorities will proceed with preparatory work during monsoon at several railway stations on Mumbai suburban section between CSMT-Kalyan/Panvel stations for the escalators. CR officials said that they intend to complete work on 214 escalators by March 2019.
Escalators are in big demands among 79 lakh daily commuters, who use the suburban rail system in Mumbai. This has comparatively lessened the crowd on FOBs. Sources, however, state that this has taken a toll on maintenance of escalators that is used by more than 9,000 people per hour.
Post stampede at Elphinstone Road, the railways made escalators mandatory at stations. As per plans of the three FOBs at a station, at least one will have escalators. Apart from this, stations that cater to long distance trains, shall also have elevators.
- 214 Total escalators on CR by March 2019
- 34 Number of escalators currently on stations
- 40 Number of escalators to be ready before monsoon