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68 Cases Of Cattle-Hit On Vande Bharat Trains Since June 2022

Amit Mishra

Dec 14, 2022, 02:43 PM | Updated 03:43 PM IST

Damaged FRP Cover of a Vande Bharat train due to cattle run-over incident
Damaged FRP Cover of a Vande Bharat train due to cattle run-over incident

68 cases of hit-by-animals involving Vande Bharat Trains, over entire Indian Railways network, has been recorded since 1 June 2022.

This information was given by the Union Minister of Railways, Ashwini Vaishnaw in a written reply to the Lok Sabha on 14 December.

The semi-high-speed train has been constantly in news over past few months, owing to back-to-back run-ins with bovines. Such incidents often leave the the train's front panel damaged and may dent the underbelly equipment of its first coach.

Increasing CROs

Train accidents involving cattle are not uncommon, as they roam freely for grazing in the bushy areas near the railway tracks.

While grazing, they walk on the tracks which lead to the accidents. Officials said if cattle is hit by a train and nobody comes and claims the carcass, it is buried with the help of local youths.

According to a report in the Print, number of ‘cattle run over’ (CRO) has risen steadily across the country over the last decade, from about 2,000-3,000 in 2014-15 to over 14,000 in 2017-18 and 27,046 in 2019-20.

This number declined to 19,949 in the pandemic year 2020-21 but surged to 26,142 in 2021-22.

However, not much can be done to prevent such incidents owing to open access to railway tracks across the country.

While railways have barricaded the tracks running through residential stretches, a large portion - including along the route of the Vande Bharat trains - is unfenced and hence, susceptible to collision with cattle.

FRP Cover In Vande Bharat Trains

The instance of CRO was considered while designing these indigenously built trains.

This is why the coupler cover fitted in front of Vande Bharat Train, as part of the nose cone which provides aerodynamic profile to the train, is made of Fibre-Reinforced Polymer/Plastic (FRP) to absorb the impact of hit with stray cattle.

In most cases of cattle run, the incidence caused minor damage to the FRP coupler cover, which was replaced or repaired in depot without affecting any disruption in train services onwards.

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