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Since the first train of empty tankers left from Mumbai on April 19 for Vizag, Indian Railways has safely transported more than 302 tonnes of oxygen to various states across the country, while 154 tonnes of oxygen is enroute to regions starved of the gas, according to the national transporter. Earlier today, it was reported that an Oxygen Express train with four tankers of LMO reached Delhi Cantt railway station from Raigarh in the state of Chhattisgarh on Tuesday morning. For those residing in the state of Maharashtra, a train carrying 44 MT oxygen in three tankers has reached Kalamboli near Mumbai on Monday from Hapa in Rajkot, Gujarat, according to a PTI report.
Another Oxygen Express train carrying 90 MT of LMO in five tankers from Bokaro in Jharkhand is expected to reach Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh by early Tuesday morning. From Lucknow, an empty rake will depart for Bokaro to bring one more set of oxygen tankers. The national transporter is responding to all requests received from state governments and for additional oxygen train requirements, it is in constant touch with the respective authorities. The Oxygen Express train’s each tanker can carry nearly 16 tonnes of medical oxygen, Indian Railways said. It further stated that these trains travel at a speed of around 65 km per hour.
Deaths have been reported from across the nation due to the lack of oxygen, and it was on the suggestion of the state governments of Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh that Indian Railways planned a policy for the movement of liquid medical oxygen in cryogenic tankers. The first Oxygen Express train was pushed into service on 19 April 2021, when seven trucks left the financial capital for Vizag to load oxygen. According to the report, these trucks were loaded on flat wagons and were carried to the loading location. Since then requests have come from Delhi, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh for these trains.