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News Entry# 74155  
May 23 2012 (7:11AM)  Officials blame loco pilot for jumping red signal (epaper.timesofindia.com)

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News Entry# 74155     
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Posted by: Dipyaman Basu**  5695 news posts  
Railways blamed loco pilot of Bangalorebound Hampi Express for jumping the signal at Penukonda station that led to the accident.
    “As per preliminary information received, the incident occurred due to passing the red signal by the loco pilot of Hampi Express,” said minister of state for Railways Baratsingh Solanki in Rajya Sabha.
    In Upper House, the minister said that the incident occurred when a stationary goods train was hit from behind by the Hampi Express. As a result, two coaches of the passenger train derailed and the first derailed coach caught fire.
    The attempt to blame the loco drivers attracted the ire of railway employees unions. They claimed that the driver of Hampi Express was not rested properly, blaming railways management for neglecting
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safety as there are 25% of the posts of loco drivers are still lying vacant.
    “There is growing tendency in management to blame loco pilots for each and every accident. After every accident, there is shifting of blame on lower functionaries. The drivers are not rested properly,” said Ram Gopal Mishra of All-India Railwaymen Federation, adding that the cut in safety budget is seriously affecting the operations which are leading to accidents,” Mishra said.
    The issue was also highlighted by the High Level Safety Review Committee headed by Anil Kakodkar. “It is noted that many times, practices and incidents impinging on safety in train operation and also the cause of accidents are not fairly brought to the notice of management as departmental loyalties often over-shadow the quest for getting into the ground realities for improvement.”
    The management has not woken up though the number of deaths have gone up from 208 to 381 and total casualties from 610 to 844 during the same period due to severity of accidents.
    Though the number of train accidents have come down from 195 in 2006-07 to 141 in 2010-11.
    It was found that 42% of accidents took place due to failure of railway staff, 43% due to failure of other than railway staff and 7% due to sabotage.
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