Mumbai-Ahmedabad Vande Bharat and Shatabdi Trains Set to Achieve 160kmph Speed in March, Cutting Travel Time by 30 Minutes

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In a significant development, the Mumbai-Ahmedabad Vande Bharat and Shatabdi class trains are poised to reach a maximum speed of 160kmph in March, effectively reducing travel time between the two cities by 30 minutes. The initiative is part of Mission Raftar, focusing on enhancing train speed. However, it’s important to note that this speed upgrade will not apply to Mumbai Suburban trains, primarily due to local train traffic and specific sections with challenging terrain.

The speed enhancement project includes various upgrades, such as track improvements, bridge enhancements, signaling system installations, and the implementation of a train collision avoidance system. The goal is to double the average speed of freight trains and increase the average speed of superfast, mail, and express trains by 25kmph, contributing to overall efficiency.

The existing speed limit between Virar and Churchgate stands at 100-110kmph. With the anticipated speed increase to 160kmph, the travel time for Vande Bharat and Shatabdi trains will be notably reduced. The Mumbai-Ahmedabad route spans 491km, with current travel times of 5.15 hours for Vande Bharat and 6.35 hours for Shatabdi.

The comprehensive works undertaken as part of this project include track and bridge upgrades, signaling and overhead equipment installations, removal of certain permanent speed restrictions, replacement of 52kg rails with 62kg rails of 90 ultimate tensile strength, increased sleeper density to ensure track stability at higher speeds, replacement of manned level crossing gates with rail over bridges or subways, strengthening of all bridges, and upgrades to signaling and traction power systems.

The implementation of the train collision avoidance system adds an additional layer of safety, where loco pilots receive signals in their cabins to prevent collisions. This strategic approach toward modernizing and optimizing railway infrastructure demonstrates a commitment to providing faster and more efficient rail transportation between Mumbai and Ahmedabad.

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