The South Western Railway (SWR) on Tuesday announced that it has eliminated all unmanned level crossing gates in and around Bengaluru to enhance safety of rail and road users.
"All the 71 unmanned level crossings in the busy urban areas of Bengaluru have been eliminated. Of them, 48 with gates have been closed and 23 gates are manned round the clock," said the railways in a statement in Bengaluru.
Though the Railway Board had set a target for its zones across the country to eliminate all unmanned level crossings (UMLC) by end-2018, the Bengaluru division achieved it six months ahead of the December deadline.
"With no unmanned level crossings over the railway lines or tracks, vehicular traffic on roads will be safe and smooth, saving manpower and maintenance costs," said the statement.
With this, Bengaluru division has become the first in SWR to attain this feat.
â€śThe division has deployed gate mitras at vulnerable and sensitive level crossing gates to alert commuters about the approaching trainsâ€ť, the statement added.
Road underbridges or limited height sub-ways were built at 42 locations and road overbridges at two locations. The remaining level crossing gates have been shut down by diverting adjoining roads to adjacent level crossings.
As there were nine unmanned level crossing gates on rail lines in the city a year ago, gatemen were provided round the clock to alert road users about the approaching trains.
In April this year, the Railways had announced that it plans to eliminate all unmanned level crossings in the country by 2020.
Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani had said earlier that 1,565 of them were eliminated in 2017-18 and the target is to remove 1,600 in 2018-19.
Notably, as of March 31, there were 5,792 unmanned level crossings across the rail network.
(With IANS inputs)