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Odisha Train Accident: CSR Probe Points At Signalling And Traffic Staff For Fault

The Commissioner of Railway Safety has submitted their report on the probe and found lapses in several stages of the operations of the trains but they are yet to go official with the report as the Central Bureau of Investigation is still looking at 'outside interference' in their probe.

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Odisha Train Accident
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The Commissioner of Railway Safety's probe holds the station staff of two departments, Signalling and Operations (Traffic) jointly responsible for the Odisha Train tragedy that claimed the lives of 288 people. Three trains including Coromandel Express, the Bengaluru Superfast and a goods train collided near Balasore in Odisha. 

Reports say that the CSR submitted a report of their probe to the Railway Board on Wednesday which looks into the internal problems in the trains that might have led to the accident and not any 'outside interference' as the Central Bureau of Investigation is probing for that. 

According to a report, the CSR probe has found out that the interlocking system was live at the moment of the accident. In further detail, it is said that the signalling maintainer had reportedly submitted a 'disconnection memo to the station master for carrying out repair work as per regulations and after the work was done a 'reconnection memo' was issued back. 

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Reports further reveal that a  safety protocol used for testing the signalling system before allowing a train to pass was not followed. It is also informed that after the 'reconnection memo' was issued, the signalling staff continued to work and further the report claims that the responsibility for the accident falls on the station’s operations staff as well as the signalling maintenance staff.

Reportedly, some lapses have been found in the conducting of protocols to access the relay room which is essential for the electronic interlocking signalling system and that makes both the signalling staff and the station master responsible for the operations.

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A senior Railway Board official told Indian Express, “It is the protocol that whenever maintenance of assets of any nature is carried out, the operations staff is also responsible for the safety of trains along with the engineering staff concerned, be it track-related or signalling related."

In further detail of the report, it has been found out that there was a green signal for the main line of the Coromandel Express but the track apparatus which reportedly determines the direction of the train was misdirected towards the loop line where the goods train was parked causing the collision. 

The Railway Board reportedly transferred the Kharagpur Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) Shujat Hashmi and South Eastern Railway heads of the departments of Signalling, Safety, Security and Commercial a few days later the accident happened.

Reports also said that South Eastern Railway General Manager Archana Joshi was transferred as General Manager of Rail Wheel Plant, Bengaluru on Friday. AK Mishra was appointed as the new General Manager of South Eastern Railway who was earlier working as the Additional General Manager of North Eastern Railway.

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