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Yellow trains with powerful lights may avert accidents, the World Bank has told the Indian Railways. Employees should be in "high-visibility" clothes and there should be fire extinguishers on every train, it said in a report to the railways on ways of ensuring safety. The report — titled 'Strengthening Safety on Indian Railways' — was submitted to the railways earlier this week. The report, accessed by PTI, suggested that as an immediate goal, the railways install "ditch lights" — safety feature in the front of a train — to make them more visible and paint them bright yellow so that they can be seen from a distance, especially during twilight hours when visibility is low. "Take fire prevention measures and add fire extinguishers in every train.
Choose high-visibility clothing for employees that can be worn all year round and ensure that it is worn at all times. Ensure that footwear and helmets chosen by employees with their allowance are appropriate for their activities," the report said.The report also recommended that level crossings and paths be painted with a cross-hatched pattern to highlight the dangers of being in the area. In April, Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu had approached the World Bank for a study on the issue of safety. He had also consulted various international agencies for suggesting safety measures keeping in view of the increasing load on railway infrastructure and subsequent safety issues. The report, submitted after four recent train accidents, including one in Uttar Pradesh in which over 20 people were killed, listed a slew of technical actions that the railways can consider over the next two years. "Train the current investigators in root-cause analysis of accidents, review timetables such that a maintenance block of four hours is provided weekly on all main lines, review safety performance in terminal operations with the intent to identify prevailing risks," the report said. It also asked the railways to establish an emergency response plan to address derailments, fires, or any other eventuality. The report has also suggested three broad parameters to improve safety by following international standards. It asked the railways to create an independent rail safety regulator, to strengthen the powers of commissioner of railway safety and to form a safety management system under the Chairman, Railway Board.
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