The first incident occurred at Sion on the Main line when the pantograph of a CST-Dombivli slow train went for a toss. Sources said that around 4.05 pm, the pantograph - the equipment that takes power from the overhead cables and supplies it to the train - developed a snag and the train stopped. The problem was rectified within 15 minutes and the services restarted. But the incident was the first of a series of technical failures on the CR.
Soon after, around 4.18 pm, there was a derailment at Wadala station on platform 4 wherein the first two wheels of the motorman’s coach went off the tracks, thus leading to disruption in services. Officials present at the site said, “A washerwoman carrying a bundle of clothes was crossing the tracks when she saw the train approaching. Out of fear, she dropped the bundle on the tracks and scampered to safety. However, the train went over the bundle which led to the derailment of the coach,” said a senior CR official.
The washerwoman, identified as Lalita Tuljaram Bhore (42), approached Wadala GRP to recover the bundle. She was arrested under sections 150 (K) and 151 (1) of the Indian Railways Act. Meanwhile, a cascading effect on the services on the Harbour line followed the derailment . Services to Panvel and Andheri from CST Harbour line were disrupted. “Services were made to run from platform 3 of Wadala station from 4.53 pm,” said V Malegaonkar, chief PRO, CR.
During this period, announcements were made that trains towards Andheri on Harbour line had been cancelled and commuters could go till Dadar on Main line and then change trains. Two trains, one to Panvel and one to Belapur from CST, were diverted from Kurla on to the Harbour line.
Spokespersons claimed that only six trains were delayed while a few were cancelled. But sources said that over 50 services were cancelled by the end of the day on Harbour line. The derailed coach was finally put back on tracks by 6.35 pm on platform 4 of Wadala station and taken for maintenance. Trains were then running late by at least 15 minutes on the Harbour line.
The third incident occurred at 6.55 pm due to a unit defect in a CST-Kalyan local, making it stop at the spot. According to officials, the affected coach was repaired and put on the tracks by 7.10 pm. Around eight services were cancelled due to these technical issues on the Main line.