Mumbai: Habitual rooftop passengers on suburban local trains, get ready for the shock of your lives, quite literally. Western Railway (WR) is in the process of completing the long-pending project of switching over to a 25,000-volt alternating current (AC) from the present 1,500-volt direct current (DC) by February 5.
This means that power of extremely high-voltage will be flowing through the overhead cables that supply electricity to the trains. If a commuter comes in contact with the overhead wires or even ventures within a 2-meter range, there is a good chance he will be pulled in, and the resultant electric shock may be fatal.
On Sunday, the Commissioner of Railway Safety (CRS) of Western Circle, part of the Ministry of Civil Aviation, inspected this 60-km stretch, visiting various power substations along the way, causing the diversion of some trains from 9.30 am to 1 pm.
Sources in WR said that the CRS, whose permission was mandatory for the upgrade to higher power supply, was satisfied with the work, and had given a go-ahead for the change to be carried out. "The Railway Board has already permitted us to go ahead with the power conversion. Necessary changes will be made so that upgrade is possible by February 5," said a senior railway official. ...more
01:04 PM, Jan 30, 2012