Mumbai: Ahead of monsoon, railways install floodgates at vulnerable locations to prevent waterlogging

According to the CR authorities, these floodgates have been installed to prevent water from entering rail tracks, especially from the Mithi River.

Shashank Rao | Updated on: Tuesday, April 26, 2022, 09:25 PM IST

Photo: File Image
Photo: File Image

The Railways for the first time have installed floodgates at vulnerable locations where flooding is possible. The Central Railway (CR) has installed these flood gates in areas near Chunabhatti, Sion, Kurla and Matunga that share its boundary with the Mithi River. Likewise, the Western Railway (WR) has put flood gauges at 36 locations some being Bandra, Mahim, Vasai-Virar etc to know the level of waterlogging.

According to the CR authorities, these floodgates have been installed to prevent water from entering rail tracks, especially from the Mithi River. Sources said that the whole idea behind these floodgates is that the Mithi River doesn’t hinder train services like it does every monsoon. The rail tracks on Chunabhatti, Sion, Matunga and Kurla are like a saucer where water tends to accumulate in case of heavy rains and waterlogging.

“These floodgates will start closing in when water outside rail premises starts entering during heavy rains. This will prevent excess water from entering rail tracks and we will remove water from the waterlogged tracks using high powered water pumps,” said a CR official.

When the floodgates are shut then it would ensure that water doesn’t flow within the rail premises and so excess waterlogging can be avoided. The Mithi River flows east-west and perpendicular to rail lines. Primarily there has been an issue of desilting on the east bank of Mithi River due to no approach available owing to encroachments.

The CR officials said that the pre-monsoon desilting of Mithi River is in progress by using silt pushing machine and a multi-purpose amphibious pontoon machine. Sources said that they are also carrying out micro-tunnelling works as a long term plan.

Senior officials from CR informed that various augmentation works in the Dharavi area are underway and a pumping station is also planned there which will come up during rains.

“We are working out plans wherein after completion of necessary works by August this year, the site will be kept under observation to ascertain the necessity of micro-tunnelling at Mukhyadhapak culvert that falls on Matunga-Sion section,” explained the CR official.

The micro-tunnelling is also expected at Kurla and Chunabhatti for which details are being worked out. This work is similar to the ones carried out at Masjid, Sandhurst Road and Hindmata which were needed to tackle the problem of waterlogging during incessant rains leading to disruption or slowdown in train services.

The micro-tunnelling work is a trenchless solution for constructing small diameter tunnels used especially for projects that require the tunnel to cross under dense traffic roads, railways and rivers.

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Published on: Tuesday, April 26, 2022, 09:25 PM IST