Mumbai: Suburban services on all the four lines—Western, Central, Harbour and Transharbour—was badly affected after the heavy rain forced the railway authorities to temporarily suspend a few train services and cancel the express trains.
The movement of local trains slowed down due to waterlogging on the tracks at various locations, besides technical problems. Rail traffic on both the lines was stalled due to heavy water accumulation on railway tracks in the areas of Mankhurd, Govandi, Tilaknagar, Kurla, Chunabhatti, Shiv, Matunga, Ghatkopar, Kurla and Vikroli.
Due to the heavy showers, there were multiple point failures at Virar, affecting suburban rail services on the Western Railway (WR). Trains were running 15 minutes late between Vasai Road and Churchgate, with a very few services being run between Virar and Vasai Road.
On the Central Railway’s, main line and Harbour Line, services were over 20 minutes late as water entered the tracks at various spots. Railway administration, claimed the water level was at a safer level and therefore trains running with a delay.
“Water level is below rail level,” said Shivaji Sutar, chief spokesperson of CR. He said the trains ran with a delay of 10-12 minutes due to heavy rain and poor visibility.
“Due to continuous & heavy rains, services stopped between CSMT-Thane on main line; CSMT-Vadala/Andheri/Goregaon; Vadala-Mankhurd on Harbour line Belapur-Kharkopar on 4th corridor.
Services are running on Mankhurd-Panvel; Thane-Vashi/Panvel; Thane-Kasara/Karjat/ Khopoli; Nerul-Khakopar-Nerul. Our team is assessing the water level continuously for resumption of services as early as possible,” CR tweeted.
Senior Railway official said the suburban services were affected in the morning following point failure at 9.15am due to heavy rains at Virar. Later, there was heavy back flow of water from Dharavi nallah to the railway area which resulted in severe waterlogging on tracks at Mahim and Matunga Road stations.
“Trains on slow lines were suspended between Churchgate and Vasai Road due to waterlogging (180mm above tracks) at Matunga Road,” said an official.
In the afternoon when all the trains came to a halt, the passengers came outside the stations to find any alternate mode of transport. But majority of them disappointed as there were a few buses on roads and those too were heavily crowded.
Passengers walked for hours to reach their destination. At many locations, tempos, private vans and buses came to their rescue. They were offering lift for free or a minimum charge. “I took a train from CSMT for Andheri.
Within 25 minutes it reached near Sewari, then, it did not move ahead even after 45 minutes. So, I walked through the tracks, from where a private car-owner gave us a lift till Ghatkopar,” said Suhas Nalawade, an Andheri resident.
The services between Churchgate-Vasai Road kept running though with reduced frequency. Traffic resumed between Churchgate-Andheri on all four lines and also between Vasai Road-Virar after water receded to considerable level after 7pm.
The long distance trains to and fro Mumbai were cancelled/diverted/short terminated during the period. Due to the cancellation of trains, refund of Rs1.2 crore was given till 6pm.