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Trial run on the 85-kilometre stretch planned for Monday

The Central Organisation for Railway Electrification (CORE) has completed the overhead electrification project in the Karur – Salem broad gauge section.

Having finished the works, CORE officials have proposed to conduct a trial run in the 85-kilometre stretch by operating an electric locomotive attached with a tower wagon on Monday prior to mandatory inspection by the Commissioner of Railway Safety (CRS), Bengaluru.

The project was taken up by the CORE in April this year after completion of electrification of the Karur – Dindigul broad gauge section.

A senior CORE official told The Hindu on Thursday that the overhead electrification work in the Karur – Salem section had been completed and some final adjustments were being done ahead of the proposed trial run from Salem to Karur on Monday.

The CORE has invited the Commissioner of Railway Safety to carry out mandatory inspection of the electrified stretch and accord clearance for operation of electric loco hauled passenger and freight trains in this section. Documents relating to completion of the project have already been submitted to the Commissioner of Railway Safety, Bengaluru who is likely to inspect the electrified section soon, the official said.

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As part of the project, around 2,100 overhead electric posts had been installed along the Karur – Salem section which has three major railway stations – Mohanur, Rasipuram and Namakkal enroute.

About 50 electric posts were installed on the Cauvery river bridge at Mohanur, the official said.

A power substation has been constructed by the CORE at Namakkal for the project and was awaiting power supply from Tangedco. Until the Namakkal power sub station gets energised, power supply for operation of electric loco hauled trains on the Karur – Salem section has been planned to be drawn from the sub station at Velliyanai near Karur, the official said.

The Karur – Salem BG stretch is the third major section in this part of the region to be covered under the electrification project after the 140-kilometre Erode – Karur- Tiruchi broad gauge section and the 73-kilometre Karur – Dindigul section which are already energised.

Electrification of this section would cut down mounting fuel bills for the Railways and avoid loco change over for freight and passenger trains.

Further, acceleration of electric locomotives was faster than diesel locomotives and more environment friendly.

Once cleared by the Commissioner of Railway Safety, the electrified route would pave the way for operation of direct passenger trains hauled by electric loco from Tiruchi to Salem, the official said.

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