The Railways lugged an extra 15 million tonnes (mt) of coal in April and May this year, against the same months in 2017. This is not just a record high in incremental coal and incremental total freight loaded but also a trend reversal against the last two years, when coal loading had dropped on a year-on-year basis.
The last time this occurred was in April and May 2011, when the Railways had loaded an extra 8 mt over the previous year period. However, the gain for coal meant loss of transport for a few other commodities such as iron ore and finished steel. These products are transported in similar wagons.
In April and May, not only did the Railway load more coal, but also moved it over longer distances. This resulted in the transporter seeing an unprecedented 31.6 per cent growth in net tonne kilometre (NTKM) — a productivity parameter that measures both loading and distance.
“The extra 15 mt coal was moved for an average distance of 491 km, up from 438 km. The entire emphasis in April and May was picking coal from all the thermal power houses. We picked all the coal that was available,” Mohammad Jamshed, Member – Traffic, Railway Board, told. Read More
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