KOCHI: Several trains in the Ernakulam-Kottayam sector were delayed on Monday after two overhead electric lines snapped after a tree fell on them in the heavy rains. Due to this, the Ernakulam-Kottayam Passenger service got cancelled.
According to railway officials, an overhead cable, carrying 25,000 volts of electricity, snapped at Edappally section after a tree fell on it.
This caused the power supply to trip. The incident took place at 4.30 am. Soon after this incident another electric cable at ‘C’ cabin near Ernakulam North railway station broke after a coconut frond fell on it.
“A lot of welding work had to be done to restore the overhead electric lines. Owing to heavy rains and movement of rail traffic, we could not go ahead with the task of restoring the electric lines immediately. In order to avoid any further delay, we requested the concerned officers to replace the electric locos with diesel engines. The engines were replaced for Vanchinad Express and the Ernakulam-Kollam Memu service. Since, it is necessary for a goods train to be on time, we replaced its engine with a diesel one. Since the last available diesel engine was used for the goods train, we were forced to cancel the Ernakulam-Kottayam passenger service which operates at 7.15 am on Monday,” Ernakulam Railway Area Manager Rajesh Chandran said.
He added that the railways is aware that this has caused a lot of nuisance to the passengers who travel in the Kottayam-Ernakulam route, but they could not foresee any other solution.
Traffic was restored by 7.30 am after welding works were carried out on the overhead electric cables. At least six to eight trains got delayed by at least 1 or two hours.
Officials said that they have launched an investigation to confirm the reason behind the electric line disruption.
“This is a very rare case. However, we have received reports that on a earlier occasion crows were responsible for snapping the electric line at Edappally.
“The strong impact of the wind and rains, could have resulted in the breakage,” the officials said.