A major train accident was averted at the Konkan route, Bondel-Pachanady railway track on Saturday, thanks to the presence of mind shown by Franklin Fernandes, a farmer from Mangaluru.
He alerted the Mangalore- Madgaon Intercity Express about the crack on the railway track and managed to stop it just in time, avoiding a possible tragedy. The incident is said to have taken place on while Fernandes was walking along the railway track at 8.20 am on Saturday morning.
He then noticed a gap of around 1.5 inches on the railway track. Franklin knew that the Intercity Express would pass over the same track at around 8.30 am. He immediately informed his brother who asked him to stop the train by waving a red cloth. While frantically looking red cloth, Fernandes sensed that the train was slowly approaching.
As Fernandes was unable to find a piece of red cloth any where around, showing a splendid presence of mind, he decided to use a bunch of red coloured flowers that were found in abundance around the track. Franklin collected a bunch of red coloured flowers and waved it at the approaching train.
Seeing the bunch of red flowers, the loco pilot stopped the train a few meters away from the gap. The accident was averted.
The loco pilot then informed the concerned authorities about the crack. The train again started its journey 50 minutes later, after the repair works were completed. Later, it was learnt that the gap was developed following a separation between welded tracks.