Cleaning of trains has always remained a big issue especially in the backdrop of Covid-19. However keeping the train coaches clean requires a huge quantity of water, at least 1,500 litre per coach. Now, the Indian Railways has identified 126 locations where automatic coach washing plants (ACWPs) will be installed of which 29 locations already have them. These plants, according to the railway officials, are big on water saving.
According to the railway authorities, it takes 1,500 litre of water per coach for external cleaning and now work on creating infrastructure at major coaching depots for tackling this issue has begun.
The ACWP not only cleans the exterior of coaches more effectively and efficiently, but also reduces the direct water requirement and wastage. These also come with water recycling facilities thereby further reducing water requirements.
“With coaching depots having ACWP, it will only consume 300 litre per coach. Of these, it uses at least 240 litre or 80 percent of it from recycled water while the remaining 20 percent is freshwater. So net water required is only 60 litre,” explained a railway official.
The rail authorities are estimating annual savings of 1.28 crore kilolitre of water. The Railways have identified 126 locations of which they have already installed at 29 locations. Work is under progress to get these ACWPs installed at 69 additional locations apart from 29 of them.
The railways are also carrying out mechanised cleaning of coaches from within to improve cleanliness and reduce water wastage. These are being done at 160 coaching depots where high pressure jet cleaners, floor scrubbers, wet and dry vacuum cleaners, hand held buffing machines etc. are deployed. Moreover, to conserve water, 6112 rainwater harvesting systems have been installed upto March 2021.