Chain Pulling in trains to stop a moving train without any valid reason is a legal offence. The person who does so may be fined and may have to go to jail. Travellers are often not aware of the laws related to this.
Chain pulling in train at the slightest point is a common occurrence in Indian Railways. Illegal vendors do chain pulling to get off the train at the desired location or to avoid the policemen. Due to this, the train runs late. Many train travellers face trouble with this. Railways also lose millions of rupees due to this problem of train chain pulling. Not only is there a financial loss from chain pulling, but there is also the fear of derailing of the train. Such an accident may threaten life and property.
In this blog, we will explain about rules of pulling the alarm chain of the train so that you don’t face any trouble due to lack of knowledge of these rules. First of all, learn under which circumstances you can pull the train chain.
What Are the Rules of Chain Pulling in Emergencies?
An alarm chain system has been devised by the Railways to stop the train in a crisis.
Situations When Chain Pulling in Train is Valid include:
- If a companion or child misses the train.
- If the train catches fire.
- The elderly or differently-abled person is taking time to board the train while it starts running.
- Suddenly someone’s health deteriorates in a bogie (seizure or heart attack).
- If there is an incident of snatching, theft or robbery in the train.
The train stops immediately upon pulling the chain. But in most of the cases, it is seen that most passengers pull the chain without any emergency or inappropriate reason. In most cases, it has been observed that most people draw a chain to board or disembark the train to help a relative or friend when there is a delay in reaching the station or on the station where the train does not stop.
Also, Check the Train between Stations
How Chain Pulling Works in the Train
The chain of the train is attached to the main brake pipe of the train. An absolute pressure of air remains between these pipes.
George Westinghouse built the mechanism, and the train brake is still working on the same model. This year marks 150 years of such braking system.
What Happens After Chain Pulling of a Train?
When the alarm chain is pulled, the valve in the brake air pipe of the coach opens and the air is released. It causes the train to slow down.
The air pressure of the brake of the train starts decreasing, and the loco pilot sees it on the pressure meter in front of him. In such a condition, he stops the train after blowing the horn three times. These three horns are a sign for the guard and security personnel of the train signalling that the ‘chain pulling has taken place’. After the signal, they step down the train and check the coach where the chain pulling has been done. In such a situation, if someone is getting off the train, the railway security personnel also catch them.
How Much is the Fine for Pulling the Chain in the Train?
Misuse of the facility of alarm chain train is a criminal act under the rules of Railways. In such condition, if the chain pulling in a train is done without any emergency, action can be taken under Section 141 of the Railway Act. Under this rule, if a passenger uses the alarm chain without any reasonable and sufficient reason, he can be fined Rs 1,000 or imprisoned for one year.
The Accused May Face a Problem in Securing Government Jobs in Future
The railways had changed the rules of chain pulling last year, but the incidence of chain pulling has been steadily increasing rather than decreasing. Under the new law, if any person is caught in the case of unnecessary chain pulling in the train more than once, hefty fines will have to be paid, and the person can be jailed. The name of the accused will be recorded in the crime register of the police station.
Later it will also be sent to DCRB. If this happens, there can be difficulties in obtaining a character certificate in case of a government job.
In normal conditions, The RPF presents the accused of chain pulling before the Railway Magistrate. They get free by depositing a fine of Rs 500. But under the new rule, RPF will now submit the charge sheet in magistrate office along with the details of the damage done to the railways. On this basis, a penalty will be fixed.
How Railways Find from Where the Chain Has Been Pulled?
Emergency flashers are installed in coaches of trains, which show where the chain of the train has been drawn. If the flashers are not fixed, then the guard of the train has to go and see in which coach of the train the valve has been removed. The coach where the lid of the air pipe has come out is considered the one where the chain pulling has taken place.
Railways May Remove the Punishment of Imprisonment for Chain Pulling in Future
According to the report of Hindustan Times, Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba has asked the Ministry to start considering changes in the Railway Act. In this act, only fine should be taken from the criminals in exchange for the jail. After the changes in the rules, there will be no jail sentence for offences such as pulling the train chain, travelling without ticket in the train, boarding on a reserve coach, and begging in the railway. Such accused will be left only with a fine, if caught.
Train Chain Pulling Can Also Cause Accidents
An accident can also be caused by pulling the train chain at high speed. There has not been any significant accident in India, but in France in 1988, the coaches collided with each other due to the chain pulling in a train running with high-speed, and the train derailed. Fifty-six people died in this railway accident.
So, Passengers should not pull the railway chain in small matters. Railway officials say that they can give information to the train captain, TTE, RPF’s train escort, coach attendant and any other railway staff in case of a small emergency.