Utkal Express derailment: Railway Safety Commissioner attributes incident to human error
Khatauli (Uttar Pradesh) , August 21 : In the aftermath of the derailment of Utkal Express on Saturday, Railway Safety Commissioner Shailesh Kumar Pathak said, based on preliminary investigation, the accident could be attributed to human failure."Based on primary investigation, it looks like a case of human error. The station master here said that although the Permanent Way Inspector (PWI) had asked for a block of the rail due to repair work, the same was not granted by the authorities in Delhi. Due to non-compliance with rules, the work continued and therefore the accident happened," Pathak told reporters here.
Further, quoting figures from the Ministry of Railways, Pathak highlighted that out of a total of 80 derailment cases; over 70 percent is caused due to human errors. However, he re-iterated that this report is based on preliminary investigation and documents and records need to be scrutinized to bring out a positive report with actual facts.
Earlier, the Chief Public Relations Officer clarified that rail traffic on the Meerut-Muzaffarnagar-Saharanpur rail section has been restored.
At least 23 people were killed and over 100 others were injured as 14 coaches of the Puri-Haridwar Kalinga Utkal Express derailed in Muzaffarnagar's Khatauli region in Uttar Pradesh on Saturday evening.
Following the mishap, the Government on Sunday suspended four railway officials and sent Northern Railway General Manager R.N. Kulshrestha on leave.
The authority also sent Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) of Delhi, Member of Engineering, Railway Board (secretary level) on leave and transferred Chief Track Engineer, Northern Railway.