A major disaster was averted when one of the bogies of Bhubaneswar-bound Visakha Express derailed at Gopalapatnam cabin on the outskirts of the port city on Thursday morning. Luckily, no passenger was injured in the accident.
The train was moving slowly near NAD area at 7 am when the S-14 bogie derailed due to a crack on the old railway track. At the time of the incident the bogie was chockablock with passengers. The wheels of the train slipped from the tracks after the derailment and the bogie tilted slightly. Thanks to the alert passengers who pulled the chain, the driver brought the train to an immediate halt. More than 100 ft track was damaged.
All the passengers of Janmabhoomi Express which was coming from Hyderabad to Vizag were accommodated in buses from Duvvada station to take them to their respective destinations while the authorities carried out repair works. The track was repaired by 12.10 pm and the normal traffic was restored. Some trains ran late for a few hours because of the mishap.
“Had the train derailed 2-3 kilometres away from Gopalapatnam, it could have resulted in a major tragedy as the train was chugging at a great speed,” sources said. Sources said the crack might have developed as the track was old.
However, railway authorities remained tightlipped over the incident. Sources said, since the trains move at a very slow pace when they approach the stations, authorities are not keen on replacing old tracks with new. TOI