THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A major tragedy was averted after railway officials managed to put down a fire that erupted in one of the luggage vans of Malabar Express near Varkala station on Sunday morning.
The fire broke out in the luggage van located in the front portion of the train. The incident was first noticed by a gatekeeper, who immediately alerted the officials concerned.
The Railway spokesperson said the incident occurred while the train, heading from Manguluru to Thiruvananthapuram, was between Paravoor and Varkala stations.
The incident was reported by 7.40 am and the loco pilots, guards immediately carried out preliminary fire fighting.
They separated other bogies from the van that caught fire and prevented it from spreading any further.
The fire and rescue services team rushed to the spot and doused it within 30 minutes.
Travel resumed once the train was deemed safe by the officials but the incident led to disruption in rail services as several trains heading to and from Thiruvananthapuram were held up at various stations.
Preliminary observation indicates that the fire could have erupted when the bikes in the van knocked against each other.