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Trains falling into rivers and coaches catching fire will be common sights in the country's first 'Railways disaster management village' expected to come up on the outskirts of Bengaluru by December next year. A senior official of the railways ministry said "overaged rolling stock" will be used to replicate train accidents so that real time rescue operations could be carried out to improve such efforts. "It will be just like the mock drills carried out by security personnel. It will be as real as it can get," he said. The railways has earmarked the 3.32-sq km village of Hejjala, with a population of 3,483 people, to develop its Disaster Management Institute and Safety village at a cost of Rs 44.42 crore, according to the blueprint accessed by PTI. "For augmenting theoretical class room training with practical hands on exercise, a real environment for training in various conditions and scenarios of train accidents, a concept of safety village was envisaged," it said. The focus is on imparting state of the art training on rescue, medical relief and rolling stock restoration techniques in a classroom and also using various simulated teaching aids.
However, it is the practical reproduction of accidents on site and the ensuing rescue operations that are being touted as the big ticket venture. "For the practical training as a part of the safety village tunnel, cutting, embankment, other conditions and obstructions like overhead structures and platforms are being created. For carrying out underwater rescue and relief operations, a water body is also being developed," it said. Overaged rolling stock such as coaches, wagons and locomotives would be stationed in the safety village along with various tools and equipment for imparting hands-on practical training, the concept note said. The village, about 25 km from Bengaluru, will also have a virtual reality centre for analysis of railway accidents. "The centre aims at providing training on dealing with various disasters under varied environment and terrain," it said. Construction work has begun and will be completed by December next year, it said.