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  After 1,000 false alarms, no more panic buttons for local trains

After 1,000 false alarms, no more panic buttons for local trains

Published : Jun 27, 2016, 1:30 am IST
Updated : Jun 27, 2016, 1:30 am IST

The Central Railway (CR) has called off its plan to add panic buttons in the second class ladies compartments.

The Central Railway (CR) has called off its plan to add panic buttons in the second class ladies compartments. This comes in after the officials installed a panic button in a ladies coach on a Harbour line train on May 8, this year. But, apparently the women commuters have pressed the button over 1,000 times until now, just out of curiosity.

The panic button was the CR’s answer to women safety inside the train after women activist groups refused CCTV cameras to be installed inside the coaches on the grounds that it violated the privacy of the women commuters. But the alternative turned out to be a bane for the CR officials who have received 1,000 false alarms. “There have been almost 1,000 hits on the panic button until now,” said an officer from the electrical department who is in charge of overseeing the panic button.

Officials are left with no option but to inspect every alarm and according to them, it is a rare occasion when the button is pressed out of genuine concern. “We operate under he fear is that one day if we ignore one of these alarms and it turns out to a genuine case where the woman commuter is in severe danger or distress,” said an official from CR’s Railway Police Force (RPF).

As a result, the CR has decided to postpone any plans of fixing another coach with the panic button as was planned earlier. “We had initially thought that after the success of the first panic button coach we would add the buttons to the remaining ladies compartments in the train. But after the curiosity of the commuters played a spoiler to our plans,” said the electrical officer.