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Indian Railways to transport oxygen amid Covid-19 surge

In order to ensure smooth supply through RORO, Railways has made available flat wagons (DBKM) to overcome the restrictions of height of Road Over Bridges (ROBs) and Over Head Equipment (OHE) at certain locations.

Statesman News Service | New Delhi |

In wake of shortage of medical oxygen in some parts of the country, Indian Railway has prepared itself to transport Liquid Medical Oxygen (LMO) and Oxygen Cylinders across the key Corridors through Roll On Roll Off (RORO) basis.

In order to ensure smooth supply through RORO, Railways has made available flat wagons (DBKM) to overcome the restrictions of height of Road Over Bridges (ROBs) and Over Head Equipment (OHE) at certain locations. It also conducted its successful trials to ensure that parameters of transportation with some speed restrictions on some sections depending upon over head clearances, said a senior officer of the Railway Ministry.

Several states mainly Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra state governments had approached the Ministry of Railways to explore if Liquid Medical Oxygen (LMO) tankers could be moved by Railways since the availability of oxygen is a key element in the treatment of certain medical conditions in the Covid infection.

In a meeting held on Saturday between Railway Board Officials and with State Transport Commissioners and representatives of industry on ‘transportation of Liquid Medical Oxygen’, it was decided that tankers would be organised by Transport Commissioner, Maharashtra and these empty containers would be moved from Kalamboli Railway station to Viraz, Jamshedpur, Rourkela, and Bokaro for loading of liquid Medical Oxygen tankers. Indian Railways has ensured that it would build ramps on an emergency basis at various locations including Viraz, Angul and Bhilai to receive the trailers and load them back.

Railways have already done a trial at Boisar (Western Railway) on Sunday where a loaded tanker was placed on a flat DBKM and all the required measurements were taken.

State governments have been told to give their oxygen demands to Zonal Railways. Railway Board has further directed concerned Railway General Managers to assist the State and Central Government Agencies to transport Oxygen smoothly.