Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Rail Travel Snafu -- My brush with final destination


Today, I was on my way back home from Hyderabad when an un-thinkable thing happened.Had I read about similar situations like these  in a newspaper ,it would generally mean skimming though it for a second and forgetting about it in the later part of the day.But I guess untill to you don't experience some things on a first hand basis, it would be just be another passing reference. 

I was already half  asleep when I took my windows seat.To pass some time I started reading the times of India.A must have in my luggage during my train journeys. The train was not increasing its acceleration , something which I felt was an uncommon thing. I could here a lot of  sound which was emanating from the wheel set right beneath me in the coach. Some time into the journey while the train still gaining speed, I heard  a defining boom from my underneath. Trying to ignore it I maintained my cool and began to sink back into my slumber -- this is when the mayhem started 


At the other end of the coach ,I noticed a small commotion. It so seemed that smoke was bellowing from somewhere near the bogies and people were really scared like mad.No one had still not forgotten how a fire had engulfed another major train last month. I saw a big red flash but no smoke. I  gained some courage and sat down in my seat. But as a natural tendency of we humans,some panic stricken passengers pulled the emergency chain and the train came to a halt. The loco pilot and the guard came along assuring the passengers saying that nothing was wrong and the train started moving again. A minute or so into the journey - the ceiling fans were running way beyond their usual speed - it meant there was another malfunction in the making .Soon enough two of the fans were burnt  and the train came to an emergency stop once again. 

Removing the DC current supply to the lights and fans would not work either as it was proved otherwise in a third instance. While all the fans were still - one right above me began to whir at a very high-speed bringing in the fear of doom from my mind. It really looked like those final destination  films where your source of  death was right near to you. I made up my mind to leave the coach while to train was standing still. My mind would not rest until I saw the coach while was still tethered to the train -- much to my dismay. There was nothing I could do but complaint about the situation to a senior engineer in the railways. 

I am not sure how far my grievances would be listened. But if I do get an update about why this happened I would perhaps take more precautions for a possible future event of the same magnitude