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Train accident: Inquiry begins at Mount station
A day after four persons travelling on the footboard in an overcrowded Beach -Tirumalpur passenger train were killed after they hit a concrete fence near platform four at the St Thomas Mount suburban train station, Commissioner of Rail Safety (CRS) K A Manoharan began the preliminary inquiry into the accident.
Accompanied by Divisional Railway Manager Naveen Gulati and senior divisional security commissioner Louis Amuthan, Manoharan visited the station and took measurements of the spot which claimed six lives in 12 hours since Monday night.
The authorities studied the standard moving dimension (SMD, the distance between the centre of the train and the nearest obstruction along the track) at the spot. The SMD at the spot measured 2.35 metres against the 2.135 meters stipulated for the spot that is along the fast line at the station, said sources.
The safety commissioner would hold separate inquiries with railway staff and officers concerned from Thursday, while members of the public with knowledge of the accident have been asked to appear for public hearing till July 30. Manoharan also appealed to the public to appear for the hearing after he met some of the injured passengers admitted at RGGGH.
Chennai Railway Division has thus far only blamed footboard travel and entanglement of shoulder bags in the concrete fence for the accident. Meanwhile, Chennai Division, which suspended operation of all suburban trains, including fast passengers on the fast line till further notice, has ordered stoppage of fast passengers at all stations on Beach-Chengalpattu stations like the regular passenger services.
About 13 fast passengers on Beach -Chengalpattu-Tirumalpur, including three on the up line, have thus far only been operating on the fast line.