After operating a 27-hour traffic block that was supposed to end at 2 am on Monday, Central Railway managed to dismantle the British-era Carnac bridge between CSMT and Masjid stations in Mumbai before time on Sunday itself. The train services which were suspended have now been resumed and block on all suburban and mainline tracks were uplifted. Further, the rail tracks in the yard between CSMT and Byculla and CSMT and Wadala were in place from 11 pm on Saturday to 2 am on Monday. The mega traffic block was further utilised to carry out other maintenance works too involving tracks, overhead equipment (OHE), signalling in shadow block, which saved about 900 hours of future block period for the railways.
“However, the first train departed from CSMT for Thane at 3:50 pm on Sunday, passing the Carnac Bridge dismantling site at 4 pm. The Harbour line was restored by 7 pm. The work on the seventh line and yard are in progress and will be completed before the scheduled plan,” an official said. He said the removal of pathways in the available corridor margins before the block day and standby cranes helped to complete the work on time.
Central Railway general manager Anil Kumar Lahoti said, “It was a huge and challenging task as traffic on all lines and CSMT stations were completely shut. The extensive preparatory work, innovative and meticulous planning, and coordination with local civic bodies enabled us to complete this enormous task ahead of schedule.”
The official said help desks were set up at various stations and continuous announcements were made about the schedule of express and suburban trains for the convenience of passengers.
He said CR appreciated the support of passengers and its counterpart Western Railway for operating suburban trains at full capacity during the weekend as well as civic authorities for running an additional number of buses during the block period.
The bridge was built in 1866-67 and was declared unsafe by an expert team of the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IITB) in 2018, though the movement of heavy vehicles on it was stopped in 2014 itself.
(With inputs from PTI)