Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Central Railway fast-tracks servicing, to cut down on delays

MUMBAI: The Central Railway (CR) efforts to streamline resources and manpower to address the backlog in carrying out periodic service of Electric Multiple Unit (EMU) coaches has paid off, with it being able to service more coaches till this February than in the year before.

On July 26, 2012, TOI had highlighted that around 250 coaches are used in services even though their periodic overhaul (POH) was not done. Rules state that railways should send coaches for periodic overhaul, which is considered the most exhaustive form of maintenance, every 18 months.

In a POH, the mechanical and electrical parts are serviced and commuter amenities—such as repair of defective seats and repaint—taken care of. In June 2012, the commissioner of railway safety, Central Circle, had expressed his displeasure such a scenario could compromise safety of commuters and smooth running of services.

The official said, "We have deployed additional man power for EMU maintenance activist. The other thing that we introduce was flexible working hours, proper planning and close monitoring of schedule and effective material management. It is tedious job but it takes lot of effort and excellent team-work to achieve this task."

The efforts of the railway have yielded results. The official said, " In financial year 2011-12, workshop was able to undertake maintenance of 711 coaches. As against this, we have been able to undertake maintenance of 802 coaches till Feb 2013.

A senior CR official at the Matunga Workshop said, "A year ago, we were able to service not more than 55 coaches per month. Till October 2012, we were doing the POH of 65 coaches per month as per the target given by the railway board. However, since the past few months, we are now able to churn out as many as 80 coaches per month."

It has helped us to reduce the failure rate of EMU by 11 per cent. Due to these measures, the back log is the region of 150, which, official claim, will be able to wipe out in a six months.


The safety of the train operations is dependent on proper maintenance of tracks, rolling stock and railway assets. These are required to be maintained and replaced at constant interval for smooth and safe running of trains

The detailed procedure for undertaking of POH is indicated in railway's manual/RDSO's instruction book, rule book.

When a rolling stock is sent in the workshop for POH, pre-inspection is carried out by the inspection organization. Based on that pre-inspection all major and minor sub-assemblies of rolling stock are repaired/replaced.

Depending on the design and usage of stock, different periodicity of schedule has been prescribed for different type of stock. For example, for the POH for LHB type coach is 24 months, but for EMU coaches it has been fixed at 18 months.

The average time taken for coaches if 9 to 29 days, depending upon the local conditions, working environment, infrastructure and manpower

Matunga Workshop

It carries out Periodical Overhaul (POH) and heavy corrosion repairs of main line as well as Electrical Multiple Units (EMU) coaches.


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