South Western Railway (SWR) is making pioneering efforts to enhance railway connectivity in the jurisdiction it serves. In the last financial year of 2022-23, SWR has made focussed efforts to improve the mobility of trains through various measures.
Among all the zones of IR, SWR has achieved a visible improvement in Mobility by 53% – the average speed of goods trains (including Stabling and Yarding) was increased from 13.97 kmph in April 2022 to 21.6 kmph in April 2023.
The tremendous improvement has been possible through the implementation of various Mobility improvement works in the jurisdiction of SWR. Some of them are as follows.
Commissioning of Gadag Bypass in March 2022: The construction of the bypass at Gadag saved the time lost in the reversal of locomotives of goods trains coming from Goa/Hubballi towards Vijayapura. This also eliminated the need for goods trains to enter Gadag Jn.
The Hubballi Bypass, commissioned in Sept 2019 has avoided the detention of goods trains while entering Hubballi Station and improved the punctuality of several Mail/Express trains traversing through Hubballi Jn.
Highest ever Electrification: In 2022-23, SWR achieved the highest-ever Electrification of 874 RKM. It has not only saved ₹205 Crores on diesel expenditure in 2022-23 but also eliminated the need for a traction change en route. 24 trains were converted to electric traction in 2022-23.
Highest ever commissioning of Doubling and New Line: In FY 2022-23, SWR achieved the highest ever commissioning of Doubling and New Line of 228.5 km. A record New Line and Doubling was achieved in 2022-23 (228.5 km).
Doubling of critical routes such as Yelahanka – Penukonda (120 Km) and Hubballi – Bengaluru (469 km) also contributed to improving the Punctuality and Mobility of trains.
Upgradation of sectional speed: Concerted efforts were made to enhance speed by removing the curves and removing the PSRs at 18 locations. The maximum permissible speed was raised to 110 kmph on 732km of railway line.
The maximum permissible speed was raised to 100 kmph on 91.6km of railway line. And, on loop lines, the speed was increased from 10/15kmph to 30kmph over 437km of the SWR region improving the Mobility.
116 trains have been speeded up in 2022-23 saving a cumulative 2718 minutes. For example, Rani Chennamma Express (Train number 16589) between Bengaluru and Hubballi used to take about 7.5 hours, but now it takes just 6.5 hours.
In 2021-22, Rani Chennamma Express (Train number 16589 and 16590) was speeded up by 39 minutes (end-to-end), and in 2022-23 by 45 minutes.
Running of Crack trains: Further with the doubling of tracks, the Goods trains were run as ‘Cracks’- meaning the trains would run end-to-end without any stoppages in between – thereby achieving a higher average speed, and effectively reducing the transit time.
For example, in the year 2021-22, SWR ran 2503 Crack trains and in 2022-23 SWR was able to run 6077 Crack trains. It helped in transporting higher amounts of cargo over longer distances in lesser time.
The improved throughput and enhanced section capacity have resulted in better turn-round of Goods wagons.
This enabled SWR to register its highest-ever loading of 46.7 million tonnes in the financial year of 2022-23, breaking the previous record of 46.24 million tonnes in 2007-08.
“In the days to come-railway will emerge as a ‘transporter of choice’ for the industry as well as the passengers” he added.
Indian Railways is termed as the lifeline of the nation. It plays a very important role in keeping the supply chain of essential commodities intact and thus helping in the timely delivery of products.