Commuters risk their lives every day
AUTHORITIES’ APATHY No level-crossing gate, foot overbridge near Juinagar railway station force residents to cross track
Due to lack of levelcrossing gate or foot overbridge near Juinagar railway station, the local residents of the area have to cross the railway tracks every day putting their lives at risk.
A number of trains from Nerul and Juinagar railway stations go to car shed through these tracks every day. However, the authorities have not done anything to prevent the vehicles and pedestrians from crossing the tracks minutes before the trains passes that stretch.
The arterial road that connects Nerul (West) with Sanpada, is also used by several students going to nearby schools and colleges. Even as no major accident has taken place in the recent past, the possibility of the same cannot be rule out, the local residents said.
The railway department had built a booth to monitor the vehicles and alert passers-by several years ago. But no officials has been spotted in the booth till date. The booth is lying deserted covered with grass and wild plants and have become home to insects and snakes.
“Around three years ago, a train hit a car when it was reversing near the crossing. Luckily, the car driver escaped unhurt. But, the rear part of the car was totally damaged in the accident,” said Srivardhan Mane, 36, a resident of Juinagar.
The stretch has become prone to accidents.
“Two months ago, a dumper moving on a service road, two metres below the tracks, rammed into a local train between Mansarovar and Khandeshwar station. How can someone claim that there is no possibility of any major accident on this road where the tracks are crossed by hundreds of vehicles every day?” said Mane.
Although the stretch is not a busy one, residents take a risk and cross the level-crossing.
Most trains on the stretch go to the car shed and a handful of around six pass through the crossing.
Nirmala Pandey, 46, another resident, said, “The railway authorities have put one sign boards a few metres away from the crossing asking people to be careful while crossing the tracks. But, people can hardly see it.”
He said that it was not possible for all to notice the signboard while, especially while travelling in a car.
“If the authorities believe that they have done enough just by putting up the signboard, they are just fooling themselves and This is the everyday sight as people cross over from Sanpada to Juinagar. (Right) The abandoned booth.
are ignoring the safety of the local residents,” said Pandey.
A senior official from Central Railway (CR) said, “When a train reaches that spot, the motorman calls a staffer from Juinagar station. The staffer alerts all the vehicles and stops them on either side of the tracks. Only after that the motorman crosses that stretch.”
“It is true that there is no official on that booth, as only three to four trains passes the crossing during the daytime. We don’t have any immediate plan to construct a level crossing gate or foot overbridge there,” he added.
Despite repeated attempts, AK Singh, chief public relations officer of CR, was unavailable for comments.