Road transport and trains ran empty as several working professionals opted to work from home.
Mumbai: The western railway (WR) line which is the closest to cyclone Ockhi’s impact along the coast in Palghar and Dahanu, remained on high alert Tuesday. Although no disruptions were reported on the WR line, the central railway (CR) witnessed a 20 minute delay. Road transport and trains ran empty as several working professionals opted to work from home.
The WR asked its staff to report to work throughout the day, and kept announcing updates on platforms and inside trains. There was slight delay during morning peak hours on the CR line with trains running 10 to 20 minutes late. However, things were back to normal by evening peak hours as rainfall decreased in intensity.
With the cyclone likely to touch parts of Dahanu and Palghar due to their proximity to the Gujarat coast, the WR was on high alert. A senior WR official said, “We are constantly keeping the commuters abreast of the situation and making announcements inside trains as well, so that commuters know that there is no need to panic.”
Both CR and WR have asked their staff to be there at stations and on platforms till the cyclone warning is relaxed. Railway Police Force (RPF) personnel, ticket collectors and station masters have especially been asked to help with crowd management on bridges and staircases to prevent a repeat of the Elphinstone Road stampede.
Meanwhile, social media once again played a not-so-positive role by spreading false messages and videos of arterial roads such as the Bandra-Worli Sea Link, Pedder Road, Sion Bridge, S.V. Road and Linking Road being cut off. On August 29 this year, when the city came to a standstill due to continuous rain, similar messages were circulated.
Rumours were doing the rounds that said the Bandra-Worli Sealink was closed at 3 pm, Peddar Road will remain closed, Sion bridge will be closed. A major rumour was that the SV Road from Santacruz to Bandra was said to be closed, that spread panic among the people, whereas the truth was that light waterlogging was reported along the route from Lokhandwala to Santacruz. Electricity was also rumoured to be cut off if the rain persists for a few more hours.