LAHORE: Pakistan Railways Chairman Zafar Zaman Ranjha says that apparently, the negligence of the driver and the assistant driver caused the May 13 derailment of the Karachi-bound Rehman Baba Express at Thatha as they did not follow the instructions given to them by the official concerned at the station.

On the other hand, a very initial inquiry issued during the late hours of the accident day also held the engine crew responsible for the derailment of the train (engine and six of the 12 coaches) due to overspending and other issues.

Mr Ranjha told Dawn a preliminary inquiry by three officers is also underway these days.

According to a joint certificate, the 48 Down (Rehman Baba Express) left the Bholari station at 1:17pm. As soon as it left, the pointsman was sent to the site in a bid to clamp, set or arrange the track manually and pilot the train for its trouble-free entry to the yard of the meting station from the outer signals.

The driver was also informed through the wireless that the train must be piloted till the point flashing where the pointsman was supposed to get it piloted. While the pointsman was on its way to reach the spot, the train entered the yard and derailed.

“The assistant driver passed the points flashing yellow and didn’t observe the red aspect of outer plus home signals as well. Despite instructions by the station master, the driver entered the yard area at excessive speed also.

Therefore the cause of the derailment is that the crew of the 48 Down was not vigilant,” concludes the report.

Published in Dawn, May 17th, 2022

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