A major train accident at the Bondel-Pachanady railway track here was averted on Saturday morning, thanks to the presence of mind of Franklin Fernandes (a farmer by profession), who flagged down the approaching train with a bunch of red flowers. It was at around 8.20 am when Fernandes was walking on the railway track to meet his neighbor. He then noticed a gap of around 1.5 inches on the railway track, which developed due to weld failure. He had also noticed that the track was out of alignment.
He immediately informed his brother Oswald Fernandes about the broken track who notified that the Mangaluru-Madgaon Intercity Express was to pass over the same track at around 8.30 am. Frank’s brother immediately advised him to stop the train by waving a red flag. While frantically looking red cloth, Fernandes sensed that the train was slowly approaching.
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Mangaluru: Quick-thinking farmer averts train mishap
As Fernandes was unable to find a piece of red cloth any where around, showing a splendid presence of mind, he decided to use a bunch of red coloured flowers that were found in abundance around the track. Franklin collected a bunch of red coloured flowers and waved it at the approaching train.
Seeing the bunch of red flowers, the loco pilot stopped the train a few meters away from the gap. The accident was averted.
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The loco pilot then informed the concerned authorities about the crack. The train again started its journey 50 minutes later, after the repair works were completed. Later, it was learnt that the gap was developed following a separation between welded tracks.