It could be termed as a major achievement for the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), as it has attained over 90 per cent reliability rate for operating the monorail on the Wadala-Chembur route, which is phase I of the Jacob Circle-Wadala-Chembur corridor.
MMRDA Commissioner UPS Madan said, “We have been doing trial runs on the entire corridor for the last few months, but were not able to reach the 90 per cent reliability mark. In order to reach this mark, a few suggestions were made by our consultants and now we are reaching the 90 per cent mark every day, which is a positive sign.”
The percentage of reliability rate is calculated on the basis of the trial runs conducted. These runs focus on time taken by the monorail from start to end, time taken to halt at and leave a particular station and signalling. The officials conduct 65 trial runs every day, using four rakes. “Tests which are being conducted currently are almost similar to commercial runs. We are happy with the results,” said an MMRDA official.
The MMRDA has secured clearance from SMRT, a Singapore-based company that was appointed to conduct safety and other checks. The clearance was issued after the MMRDA fulfilled two out of four conditions, and assured officials that the remaining two would be fulfilled shortly. Now, the only certification the MMRDA requires is a safety certificate from the Commissioner of Railways Safety (CRS). Once issued, MMRDA would be able to throw open the route (Wadala-Chembur) for public use.
Madan said, “We’ll be approaching the CRS soon and expect it to certify the line after reviewing it.” MMRDA sources said securing a safety certificate would take a while because the CRS official, authorised to inspect the line, is unwell. “The CRS official who was supposed to come for inspection is unwell. But if the process gets delayed, we’ll request authorities concerned for another official to conduct the inspection so that the monorail can be thrown open to the public at the earliest,” a senior MMRDA official said.
Construction work of the monorail corridor began in 2008, and has missed several deadlines in the last three years