New Delhi: If you’re planning to take an overnight journey on a train, we have got some news for you. Now, you will have to keep your phones fully charged as the Indian Railways has decided to disallow passengers from using mobile charging stations onboard trains between 11 pm and 5 am. The step has been reportedly taken as a precautionary measure in the wake of recent fire incidents onboard trains.
“It is a Railway Board instruction for all railways. We have started implementing it from March 16,” CPRO of Western Railway, Sumit Thakur, was quoted as saying by PTI news agency.
Recently, a fire had broken out in the Delhi-Dehradun Shatabdi Express. A coach of the train had caught fire in a suspected case of a short circuit. A fire also broke out in the engine of a static goods train at a Ranchi station.
Southern Railway CPRO B Guganesan told PTI that these instructions are not new, but a reiteration of earlier orders of the Railway Board.
He said, “In view of the recent incidents of fire, we have done the needful. It is a precautionary measure and even earlier the Railway Board had issued such orders. The power from the main switchboard for these points will be switched off from 11 pm to 5 am.”
This is to be noted that back in 2014, the Commissioner of Railway Safety had recommended that charging stations be switched off between 11 pm and 5 am, soon after a fire incident in the Bangalore-Hazur Sahib Nanded Express. The Railway Board had eventually issued such orders to all rail zones.
In a report on the fires, officials suggested that the points used for charging mobile phones and other electronic devices should be switched off at night.
“Many incidents of minor fires, reported onboard long-distance trains, were caused due to overcharging of electronic devices,” the officials said.
(With inputs from PTI)