Smoke in train creates panic

Smoke in train creates panic

Passengers jump out of the coach as fumes engulf compartment

But she did not know until later that there was high drama in the train soon after.
Around 9.45 am, the train from the Kolar Gold Fields halted at SGT near Hoodi as always without much problem.

It was only after a few minutes that passengers in the last compartment began to realise that something was terribly wrong.

Thick black smoke started engulfing the compartment and created panic among the 100-odd commuters.

Asha Kumari, who works at the container depot near the station, got to learn about the chaos and panic that passengers went through only when her colleague reached office much later. “One of my colleagues who got stuck in the train narrated the entire story,” she said.

Much before the cause or point of origin of the smoke could be ascertained, a huge number of passengers jumped out of the train shouting “Bomb. It is a bomb!” This added to the tension and resulted in minor injuries and twisted ankles for four people, said eye witnesses.

“People jumped out of the train and created panic. Because of them, my mother got scared and in the rush, fell down,” claimed Prasad R, a former BGML employee. He was taking his 75-year-old mother for routine dialysis to a hospital on Old Airport Road. “She now has a swollen ankle and knee as she fell on the floor of the compartment,” he added.

Another passenger, Sandeep Kumar, blamed both passengers and officials for adding fuel to fire.

“Nobody bothered to give us any information. We asked the driver and station authorities, but none replied. Finally, after 20 minutes, the mechanics who reached the spot said it was the engine emitting smoke after it got jammed,” said Prasad.
A South Western Railway official said: “It was a small incident. Nothing happened. Mechanical failures happen in planes also.”

When asked about the fume and railway officials not responding to the passengers’ plight, he said: “I don’t know about such a situation. We attended to the engine problem within minutes.”

Deccan Herald contacted PRO, Suvankar Biswas, only to realise that he was not even aware of the incident.

He enquired and later informed: “There was engine breakdown and a spare local diesel engine was sent from Krishnarajapuram within 30 minutes.”

On being asked about the fumes that billowed out of the engine, Biswas said: “Nothing of that sort happened. It was a simple breakdown. If it is something major, we will issue a press statement on Tuesday.”

The train left SGT only to stop after two kilometres and there was smoke once again, but with less intensity. The train reached City Railway Station at 11.45, instead of 10.30 am as scheduled.