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Covid-19 isolation coaches: Railways considers using bamboo, khus mats for insulation

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on March 31, 2020 Published on March 31, 2020

In view of the coronavirus outbreak, the Railways is converting coaches into isolation wards   -  B JOTHI RAMALINGAM

Behemoth ready to equip 20,000 coaches to accommodate 3.2-lakh beds

Indian Railways is prepared to modify 20,000 coaches into quarantine or isolation coaches to augment the quarantine facilities being created in the country, if the Covid-19 situation worsens.

Work on modification of 5,000 coaches, which are to be converted into isolation coaches, has already started. These coaches would have the capacity to accommodate up to 80,000 beds. One coach is expected to have 16 beds. As they would all be non-AC coaches, to protect the patients from heat, the Railways pland to use bamboo/khus mats, an official release said.

For insulation, bamboo/khus mats may be pasted on the roof and the sides of the coach — above and below the windows — to shield the inside of the coach from heat, added the release.

These modified 20,000 coaches can accommodate up to 3.2-lakh beds for the purpose of isolation.

In this connection, consultations were held with Armed Forces Medical Services, Medical Department of various Zonal Railways, and Ayushman Bharat, Ministry of Health. Five Zonal Railways have already prepared prototypes for the quarantine/isolation coaches, added the release.

One Indian style toilet is to be converted into a bathing room. It is to be equipped with bucket, mug and soap dispenser, said the release. Taps with lift-type handle would be provided for the washbasins.

Published on March 31, 2020

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