Passengers stuck in Metro for 40 minutes, services hit (Second Lead)

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

NEW DELHI - Travellers on Delhi Metro’s Jahangirpuri-Gurgaon line faced problems after a train got stuck due to a technical snag in a tunnel near Patel Chowk station locking in passengers for more than 40 minutes Wednesday afternoon.

Metro traffic in both the directions on the line remained adversely affected between Patel Chowk and Central Secretariat stations while the train was held up from 12.52 p.m. to 1.58 p.m.

Passengers present in the snag-hit train managed to get off only after a rescue train towed it to Central Secretariat station.

Air-conditioning and lights in the train were working and announcements were being made to prevent people from panicking during the hold-up, officials said.

The services on the line normalised after a few hours. When the services resumed, commuters complained that trains were running at a slower pace and stopping for a longer duration at stations, which were overflowing with passengers due to the disruption.

Delhi Metro said that the services came back to normal by the evening.

Prima facie, the fault occurred due to a problem in the internal braking communication system of the train as a result of which the special safety parking brakes were automatically applied by the train, an official statement from Delhi Metro said.

The technical teams had to release the parking brakes by going below the undercarriage of the train after which the affected train was coupled with a rescue train and the passengers were deboarded at Central Secretariat, the statement said.

According to officials, Metro services from Rajiv Chowk to Jahangirpuri and from Central Secretariat to HUDA City Centre remained normal while the snag-hit train was stuck in the tunnel. Single line operations were run between Rajiv Chowk and Central Secretariat stations during this period.

Delhi Metro added that the manufacturer of the train, Bombardier, has been asked to investigate the incident.

Commuters meanwhile expressed anger over the disruption saying that such technical snags were now becoming a regular feature on the Metro.

This is now happening almost everyday. The Metro stops in between the route and there is a lot of delay. Today it was however too long as we were stuck there for more than 40 minutes, said Nilesh Pandey, who was in the snag-hit train.

The trains were moving at half their usual speed in the afternoon and making very long halts at stations. It took me 15 minutes to come from Malviya Nagar to Green Park, while usually it takes only five, V. Ramesh Kumar, a regular passenger of the Jahangirpuri-Gurgaon line, told IANS.

The Metro was running very slow and was stopping longer at every station, so I had to leave the train and take an autorickshaw, Richa, said another commuter.

The services were affected due to the crowd that got accumulated when the trains were stopped. The trains’ speed is slow because it is a chain effect… it normalised by the evening, a Delhi Metro official said.

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