17 April, 2021

The Delhi Metro To Dombivali?

Mumbai’s geriatric suburban rail system is creaking at the joints. Let DMRC build an elevated track system and bring in its safe coaches.

Flashing Overhead
An elevated railway track
Photograph by Alamy
The Delhi Metro To Dombivali?

With a total network length of 218 ­km, the Delhi Metro carried an astounding 1,001 million passengers in 2016-17; that is, 2.76 million passengers a day. An eight-coach train running on its various colour-coded lines carries 2,400 passengers during peak hours, or as many as 300 passengers per coach. But the most impressive feature of Delhi Metro lies perhaps somewhere else: it sees no passenger deaths, except for the rare suicides that can be counted on one’s fingers. There is no instance of a Metro passenger dying by falling off from trains—the automated doors ensure that—or, more importantly, due to any accident so far.

Let us compare Delhi Metro’s safety and sec­urity performance with that of the Mumbai Suburban Rail system. At 465 km, the latter covers over double the length—and carries 7.5 million passengers a day. The peak capacity is roughly the same: 290 passengers per coach. Each 9-coach EMU train set that we call a ‘Mumbai local’ can carry up to 2,600 passengers, and usually does. So far, so good.

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