Vande Bharat runs as fast as 110 kmph in north Kerala, average below 70 kmph; ‘other trains stalled’

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Kannur: Locomotive pilot of Vande Bharat express train said that the train successfully achieved the expected speed during its trial run on Monday from Thiruvananthapuram to Kannur. The train achieved a maximum speed of 110 kmph on the Shoranur-Kannur route, said MA Kuriakose, the loco pilot. The speed on the Thiruvananthapuram-Shoranur route was 80 kmph.

The Vande Bharat Express departed from Thiruvananthapuram at 5:10 am and arrived at Kannur at 12:20 pm, taking a total of 7 hours and 10 minutes to cover 502 kilometres. The average speed of the trip was less than 70 kmph.

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Kuriakose expressed optimism that the train will be able to maintain this speed once the track strengthening work is completed. He also mentioned that the Vande Bharat Express has been well-received by the public.

"The Vande Bharat Express achieved the expected speed during the trial run. We hope to maintain this speed once the service begins. Construction work is ongoing to strengthen the tracks in several areas. Further time savings can be achieved by reducing stoppage durations during regular service. The journey was very smooth, and we expect a comfortable experience for passengers when the service commences. We are happy with the positive response from the public towards the Vande Bharat Express," said Kuriakos, responding to a query from Mathrubhumi News in Kannur, after completing the first lap of the trial run.

Kuriakos claimed that currently, the stretch between Shoranur and Mangalore can be travelled at a speed of 110 kmph, while the section between Shornur and Ernakulam can be covered at 80 kmph, and beyond Ernakulam at 90-100 kmph.

The train received a grand reception at its final stop, Kannur, with musical performances and flower showers. The trial run included stops at Kollam, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Tirur, and Kozhikode stations. Railway officials expect to finalise the timetable for the Vande Bharat Express before Tuesday.

Meanwhile, passengers of other trains on the route complained about stalling their trains for the smooth running of Vande Bharat. The Chennai to Mysore trip of the train also had faced similar issues with commuters expressing frustration over ‘long delay’ caused crossovers at some stations.

The train will be inaugurated by prime minister Narendra Modi next week.

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