A road over-bridge (ROB) collapsed on rail tracks in suburban Andheri amid heavy rains in the city this morning bringing local train services of the Western Railway to a halt, an official said.
Two passers-by were reportedly injured in the incident, civic sources said.
It is suspected that some people are trapped under the debris of the collapsed over-bridge, a senior fire brigade official said, adding that a search and rescue operation is underway.
Office-goers, for whom local trains are the lifeline for daily commuting, bore the maximum brunt of the incident as many of them could not reach their work places.
Mumbai’s famous tiffin carriers Dabbawalas expressed their inability to operate as the train services on the Western Line were stopped.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has asked the Mumbai police commissioner to ensure smooth traffic movement and asked the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to increase its bus service for the convenience of commuters.
The ROB collapsed near the eastern side of the Andheri Railway Station around 7.30 am, an official of the BMC’s disaster management cell said.
The Overhead Equipment (OHE) was damaged and a team of engineers are working to restore services, Western Railway (WR) Chief Public Relations Officer Ravinder Bhakar told PTI.
“A part of the ROB collapsed, bringing the Up and Down local train services of the WR to a halt. Our officers are at the spot and making efforts to restore the services,” he said.
Local trains are running between Churchgate (in south Mumbai) and Bandra (in the western suburbs), and between Virar (located in neighbouring Palghar district) and Goregaon (western suburb), another WR official said.
Personnel of the fire brigade, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), the Mumbai Police, the railway police and local ward of the BMC are at the spot and working to clear the debris and repair the damaged OHE, the civic official said.
“Incessant rains apparently caused cracks in the ROB, resulting in its collapse. Thankfully, no train was passing on the track under the bridge at that time,” he said.
Some people are suspected to be trapped under the debris and a search is underway, chief fire officer P S Rahangdale said.
An ambulance, a rescue van, and four fire engines are at the spot, he said.
Several commuters faced a harrowing time as they were unable to reach their offices after the train services were stopped.
Prashant Ghag, who works at a media house in the Fort area of south Mumbai, said when he reached the Borivali station to board a Churchgate-bound local train, he came to know that there were no services.
“As I could not find any alternate mode of transport to reach my office amid the heavy rains, I had to return home,” he said.
The Dabbawalas also expressed their inability to deliver tiffins to office-goers as train services were halted in the western suburbs.
Some local train services on the harbour corridor of the Central Railway were also affected, as a few trains of the Central Railways pass through the WR route.
The chief minister asked the Mumbai Police and the BMC to ensure smooth movement of the traffic.
“CM @Dev_Fadnavis spoke to @CPMumbaiPolice and BMC commissioner on #GokhaleBridgeCollapse incident. CM asked CP to ensure smooth traffic movement and also asked BMC commissioner to increase frequency of BEST buses for convenience of commuters. #MumbaiRains,” the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) said in a tweet.
CM @Dev_Fadnavis spoke to @CPMumbaiPolice and BMC commissioner on #GokhaleBridgeCollapse incident. CM asked CP to ensure smooth traffic movement and also asked BMC commissioner to increase frequency of BEST buses for convenience of commuters. #MumbaiRains
— CMO Maharashtra (@CMOMaharashtra) July 3, 2018
Heavy rains lashed Mumbai and some neighboring areas since late last night, causing water-logging in low-lying areas and disruptions in vehicular movement on some roads.