MMRDA probe to find out how blaze-resistant train caught fire.
Mumbai: The metropolitan commissioner U.P.S. Madan has ordered a full check up of all monorail trains and an inquiry to find out as to how a fire-resistant monorail train caught fire early on Thursday. Monorail services have been suspended till further orders, after a major fire gutted two empty coaches of a monorail at Mysore Colony monorail station. The monorail had left Wadala to begin its first service from Chembur at around 5 am on Thursday morning. No casualty was reported as the train’s coaches were empty, with only a driver and a security guard aboard the pilot car.
The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) inquiry will be conducted by an independent committee, which will be headed by P.S. Baghel, former commissioner of railway safety, Western Circle.
According to the special features of monorail, the rake has a fire-resistant technology wherein floorings and parts of interiors can resist fire for about half an hour.
“The cause of the fire is under investigation and the Fire Brigade will give recommendations to avoid such incidents in future,” said P.S. Rahangdale, chief fire officer, Mumbai Fire Brigade.
A spokesperson from the MMRDA stated, “The motorman, when the train reached Mysore Colony station, noticed smoke emanating from below the last coach and called the Fire Brigade immediately.”
He said, “However, by the time a fleet of six fire extinguisher engines reached the spot the coaches caught fire and spread quickly. It required one hour to douse the fire.” A level 1 fire was reported at 5.20 am in the morning, the spokesperson said.
“I was out for my morning walk when I saw the flames emanating from the train at Mysore colony station. The driver immediately came out and then within half an hour, the fire brigade team arrived. The last two compartments were completely up in flames by the time brigade reached,” said Prathamesh Patil, a local resident.
It is to be noted that the phase 1 (Chembur-Wadala) of monorail is operational with just four rakes as the contractor is yet to deliver the remaining six rakes that are under maintenance.