5k Covid-19 isolation coaches from IR with readiness to ramp up 4 times

Indian Railways has started work on modifying 5000 non-air conditioned ICF sleeper coaches into quarantine facility/isolation wards for up to 80000 beds (at 16 patients per coach).

A statement from Railway Board said that IR was ready to spare 20000 coaches for the cause accommodating up to 3.2 lakh people in case the situation so demanded.

The decision follows consultations between Armed Forces Medical Services, Medical Department of various Zonal Railways, and Ayushman Bharat, Ministry of Health.

The zone-wise allocation of these 5000 coaches is as follows:-

Sl. No.ZoneNumber of Coaches to be Converted    Sl. No.ZoneNumber of Coaches to be Converted    
1.CR  4829.NWR  266
2.ER  33810.SR473
3.ECR  20811.SCR  486
4.ECoR  26112.SER  329
5.NR  37013.SECR111
6.NCR29014.SWR  312
7.NER  21615.WR  410
8.NFR  31516.WCR  133

Coach modification is being done across several zonal railways. Prototypes have already been made by five zones.

The Director General, Railway Health Services will issue detailed SOP (standard operating procedure) for operation and use of these quarantine/isolation coaches/trains.

All zonal Railways have been advised to plan for the above modifications immediately and inform the date of readiness of these rakes to Railway Board.

Coach features

One Indian style toilet is to be converted into a bathing room with bucket, mug and soap dispenser.

Taps with lift type handle would be provided in washbasins. Similar tap to be provided at proper height so that bucket can be filled.

The first cabin near the  bathing  room will be used as store/paramedics area.

It will have two hospital/ plastic curtains transversely in the aisle so that the entry and exit to the entire eight berth cabins can be screened off.

Two Oxygen cylinders will also be provided by the Medical department with suitable clamping arrangement. These cylinders would be located in the side berth area of the sleeper coach.

Both middle berths will be removed in each cabin. Extra bottle holders shall be provided in each cabin for holding medical equipment, two for each berth.

Every cabin will be provided two, 3-peg coat hooks.

Mosquito net to be provided on windows to avoid mosquito entry inside besides allowing proper ventilation.

Each cabin will be provided with 3 dustbins with foot operated lids of red, blue and yellow colour suitably lined with garbage bags.

For insulation of the coaches, bamboo/khus mats may be affixed/ pasted on roof and each side of coach above and below windows to shield effect of heat inside coach.

All charging points for laptop and mobile will be made be functional.

Railway Board has mandated that all amenity fittings should be in place whenever these coaches are requisitioned.

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  1. The railways are doing excellent job. In all aspects, the employee under the present Railway Minister work hard to put railways upfront. Great job.

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