Chennai, Jul 25 (UNI) The Southern Railway(SR) proposed to make another 18 trains into 24 coach trains this year as it was gearing up to carry higher volumes of passengers, which was growing in the range of 10 to 11 per cent in the last three years.
A Railway release here said the SR has placed indents for additional coaches with Railway Board and projected requirement of coaches that would arise consequent to completion of gauge conversion over certain sections and new trains announced in the Budget.
''Over and above permanent augmentation, the Railway has already added a sum total of 2598 coaches based on daily demands in various trains. As compared to the first quarter of last year (2007-08), this is 80 coaches more'', it said.
Growth in rail passengers over SR has been in the range of 10 to 11 per cent in the last three years. In response to the same, Southern Railway has been adding additional coaches to trains (augmentation) thereby permanently increasing the carrying capacity per train per service.
In 2005-06, the Railway had added 47 coaches to its trains.
However, in 2006-07, this number increased to 77 coaches to 24 pairs of trains and in 2007-08, the Railway added 176 additional coaches to 45 pairs of trains, it said.
While it was the long term objective of the Railways to increase the length of high occupancy mail and express trains to 24 bogies and high occupancy passenger trains to 15 bogies, in the short and medium term, it is only the induction of high capacity coaches that would provide the necessary relief in transporting additional passengers, it said.
As against 72 berths available in a regular sleeper-class coach, a high capacity sleeper class coach carries 81 berths. Similarly, as against 64 berths in AC 3-tier, the high capacity coach can carry 72 berths. Both the AC 2-tier and first-AC high capacity coaches can accommodate an additional two and four berths respectively.
SR already has seven trains on which high capacity coaches have been inducted. Based on the supply of additional high capacity coaches, these too will be inducted into the popular trains in a phased manner, the release added.
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