CR to improve passenger info system

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After nearly a week of disruption in service, Central Railway (CR) has decided to improve its information system to ensure passengers get timely updates on delays/cancellations with reasons.

Vinay Mittal, chairman of railway board, admitted Saturday his staff was not able to effectively communicate to passengers complexity of the work CR had undertaken, which had led to chaos on the suburban main line.

"This was major infrastructure-related activity, which will improve service. We had to change direction of 16 crossover lines and signals. There were major changes in Thane yard. When we started the work, we realised it was more complicated and time-consuming than anticipated. We should have communicated this effectively to the media and passengers," he said.

For nearly a week from December 30 night, CR main line users were inconvenienced as several trains were cancelled and many ran late by over half-an-hour, causing overcrowding.

CR was modernising infrastructure at Thane station. While indicators at many stations were not functioning properly, announcements at others were irregular.

Mittal mourned the three deaths between Vikhroli and Ghatkopar on December 31 due to overcrowding on trains, but said the accidents may not be due to disruptions caused by the infrastructure work. "The deaths are a sensitive subject and a matter of concern, but two of the three deaths were in off-peak direction, so it could not be because trains were full," he said.

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