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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

More ambulances planned at stns

Mumbai: Following the sustained efforts of activists and strong observations by courts, the Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC) has offered to deploy ambulances at stations on the suburban network to provide prompt medical aid to accident victims within the crucial golden hour. 

    On an average, 3,500 people die every year on the Central Railway (CR) and Western Railway (WR) networks due to crossing of tracks, rooftop travelling, falling from trains, etc. The railways has been accused of not having adequate medical facilities at stations that can help rush a victim to hospital during an emergency. 
    To begin with, the MRVC has plans to deploy five ambulances as part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR) plans. MRVC managing director Rakesh Saksena said: "It will be pilot project. The ambulances will have all necessary facilities and paramedic staff to provide aid within the golden 
hour." The stations, though, are yet to be decided. 
    The railways is currently looking for dedicated operators. "We want operators who will provide prompt, roundthe-clock help to accident victims. We are willing to spend Rs 50,000 per ambulance per month," said Saksena. 

    The corporation has also come up with a "trespassing control project" based on a survey carried out by Sir J J College of Architecture. A meeting of key stakeholders, including representatives of CR, WR, NGOs, MMRDA, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, World Bank and commuter as
sociations, was held on Tuesday to discuss the project. "One of the recommendations was to undertake a sustained campaign, similar to the Pulse Polio drive, at railway stations. Some people also suggested that we rope in celebrities to highlight the problem," said Saksena. 
    The MRVC has a $430 mil
lion loan agreement with the World Bank for the upgrade of railway infrastructure. "The money that is likely to be saved after placing orders for 72 rakes with Bombardier can be used to fund the Rs 110-crore trespassing control project," said an official. As part of the project, 31 foot overbridges (FOBs), six escalators, five elevators, a subway and a road overbridge will be built across the suburban network before 2014. It also includes decongesting platforms, improving access to stations and providing barricades between tracks, besides FOB widening work at Dadar by 6 m. 
    The locations have been identified after a study of 11 stations—Kandivli, Borivli, Bhayander, Vasai Road, Nalasopara and Dadar on WR and Kurla, Kanjurmarg, Thane, Thakurli and Kalyan on CR. 
    Atul Agarwal, senior transportation specialist (World Bank), said: "The study undertaken by the MRVC is a good initiative. Similar facilities may be required at several other stations in future." 

LONG WAIT FOR MED AID WHAT MRVC WANTS TO DO 

To begin with, MRVC will provide ambulances at five stations Locations yet to be 
decided 
    MRVC looking for operators, will pay Rs 50,000 per ambulance per month
WHAT HAS BEEN DONE SO FAR 
    Legal battle resulted in setting up of emergency medical room at Dadar station (CR) in March 2011 

    Ambulances at Churchgate, Bandra, Andheri & Borivli on WR and CST, Thane & Sewri on CR 
THE GOLDEN SOLUTION Victims should be 
shifted to hospital within golden hour 
During emergency, rail staffers have to administer 
first-aid to accident victims 
Stationmaster has to call 
ambulance/taxi


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