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It’s official: Golden Rock Workshop to overhaul LHB coaches

The authorities expect that the setting of the new facility to overhaul new generation LHB would take about three years.M_SRINATH

The Railway Board, New Delhi, has given its clearance for the establishment of a new facility to overhaul new generation LHB (Linke Hoffman Busch) broad gauge passenger coaches at the Golden Rock Railway Workshop here. The approval from the Railway Board was communicated to the Southern Railway headquarters recently after the workshop forwarded a detailed proposal in this connection some time ago.

The over 80-year-old workshop, which is currently engaged in a slew of activities, had forwarded the proposal to the Board seeking its clearance so as to gear up to handle LHB coaches in future due to its introduction in many express trains replacing the conventional passenger coaches manufactured by the Integral Coach Factory at Chennai.

The proposed new facility to overhaul the German - designed LHB coaches equipped with more safety features is to be established at a cost of Rs. 23.6 crore, workshop authorities here told The Hindu . The Golden Rock Railway Workshop is one among the railway workshops across the Indian Railway network to overhaul passenger coaches at periodic intervals.

An exclusive shed to handle LHB coaches would be put up within the sprawling premises of the workshop which overhauls nearly 1,000 conventional passenger coaches every year in addition to overhauling broad gauge diesel locomotives.

Necessary machinery and equipment including a crane are proposed to be procured for establishing the new facility once funds were sanctioned. The authorities expect that the setting of the new facility would take about three years. Nevertheless, it has already started overhauling bogies of LHB coaches which are different from those fitted in the conventional broad gauge coaches. The workshop has already rolled out 20 LHB bogies after overhauling them at its premises since April.

In order to get a hands-on experience in handling LHB coaches in future, the workshop is planning to ask the Southern Railway headquarters to dispatch one LHB coach for overhauling it as a pilot measure. The authorities said the Railway Ministry has decided to switch over to the LHB coaches given its safety features in the near future.

Conventional rakes in express trains including the Tiruchi - Chennai - Tiruchi Cholan Expresses, Madurai - Chennai- Madurai Pandyan expresses, Tiruchi - Chennai - Tiruchi - Rockfort expresses, Chennai - Tirunelveli - Chennai Nellai expresses and Chennai - Sengottai - Chennai Pothigai expresses have already been replaced with LHB coaches. The authorities say the LHB coaches have superior braking power and were longer than the conventional coaches with wider bays and doorway.


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