To tackle the increasing instances of cooling system malfunctions in air-conditioned local trains, the Western Railway (WR) has taken a proactive step by deploying technicians on board. The scorching heat and high humidity levels in Mumbai have led to a significant rise in passengers relying on these air-conditioned trains, placing additional strain on the cooling systems.
Addressing Cooling System Malfunctions
In order to promptly address cooling failures during the journey, WR has stationed a technician on each air-conditioned local train. This strategic decision ensures that any malfunctions in the cooling system can be swiftly resolved. The focus is particularly on the oldest air-conditioned trains, which have reported the highest number of cooling system malfunctions.
With 79 air-conditioned services operated by WR, an average of 90,000 passengers rely on these trains daily. However, the limited capacity and overcrowding often result in strain on the cooling system. In the past month alone, cooling problems have been reported in four to five coaches of different air-conditioned local services.
Temperature and Capacity Considerations
Under normal conditions, each compartment of an air-conditioned local train is equipped with two 15-ton cooling units, maintaining a temperature of 24 degrees Celsius. However, during peak hours and overcrowding, the temperature inside the coaches can rise up to 27 degrees Celsius, putting additional strain on the air-conditioning system. WR is considering increasing the cooling system's capacity within the coaches to address this challenge effectively.
Prioritising Passenger Comfort and Safety
During peak hours, the load on the cooling system can reach high levels, with 14 to 16 passengers per square meter, also known as "super dense crush load" in railway terminology. WR's deployment of technicians on board and exploration of capacity enhancement measures reflects their commitment to prioritize passenger comfort and safety. By taking proactive steps to address cooling system malfunctions, WR aims to ensure a comfortable and pleasant journey for passengers in the air-conditioned local trains.