Monday, February 16, 2015

What next?
Can anybody guess the reason for 12677 Express accident on 13-2-2015?
·         Blame game has started and finally a cooked up story is going to evolve.
·         Is Loco Pilot responsible for the above accident? You can decide yourself.
·         Loco pilot was running at a speed of 63kmph, where the permitted speed was 80kmph.

Was it a result of emergency brake application?
The brake force during normal brake application and emergency brake application remains the same. Only time for application of brakes is reduced in emergency.
The following chart illustrates the brake application in coaches at various position of the brake handle.
SL No.
Position of brake handle
BP Pressure in Gauge
BP Drop
Brake cylinder pressure in coaches
5 kg/cm2
Minimum Reduction
4.7 – 4.5 kg/cm2
0.3 to 0.5 kg/cm2
0.75 to1.5 kg/cm2
Full Service
3.4 – 3.2 kg/cm2
1.6 to 1.8 kg/cm2
3.8 kg/cm2
Over Reduction
2.5 – 2 kg/cm2
2.5 to 3 kg/cm2
3.8 kg/cm2
5 kg/cm2
3.8 kg/cm2
Note: Brake cylinder pressure depends on drop of Brake pipe pressure with a multiplication factor of 2.5 and maximum is 3.8 Kg/cm2
So from full service application to emergency application the brake force remains the same irrespective of brake handle positions.
Hence the theory becomes unreliable and in such case every trains running in Indian Railway has to derail as 3.8Kg/cm2 brake cylinder pressure is used in all the trains during their journey.
More over safety features of the locomotive initiates brake application of 3.8 Kg/cm2 automatically during the following circumstances.
Ø  Tripping of important circuit breakers.
Ø  Computerized brake system failure.
Ø  Chain pulling.
Ø  Failure/ action of vigilance control device.
Ø  Any leakage of air pressure in coaches.
So the question of excessive/ emergency application does not arise and will not cause any derailment. More over emergency brake application take place automatically, when pipes between coaches get disconnected.
Whether the derailment has occurred because of boulders on Track?
If boulders were there, it might have damaged the engine rail guards before derailing the coaches.
No such damages for the engine were visible after the accident. It was not a ghat section.
Maintenance of track and coaches are paramount to improve safety in train operation.
A day before the incidence, Rail breakage was reported by loco pilot worked in the same section (KM169/300-400) of the track where the fateful incidence took place.
The track after maintenance was given fit to run at permitted speed of 80 Kmph
Anti Telescopic Steel bodied coaches might have reduced the impact in such accidents. But the coaches were too old to withstand such an impact.
During every accident a scapegoat will be there to conveniently hide the mistake of several others.
To cover up system failure a Loco pilot was removed from service in an incident involving an important express train in Bangalore division.
Whether safety improved? Is human life not valuable? Do we repeat our mistakes? No!
If we are not raising our voices together to find the real cause of accident and take necessary safety measures, we can see more in near future. Print and electronic media with social responsibility is having an important role to play to raise this issue.

Safety First –Safety Always
General Secretary


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