India’s Longest ‘Escape Tunnel’ In J&K Ready

The 12.89 kilometre tunnel, India’s longest escape tunnel, was finished on Thursday on the 111 km under-construction Banihal-Katra railway line in Jammu and Kashmir, authorities said, news agency PTI reported.

It is a component of the highly regarded Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Railway Line (USBRL) project.

This is the fourth tunnel on the Banihal-Katra line, following the 12.75 km tunnel T-49 (India’s longest tunnel) that was finished in January of this year.

Here’s All You Need To Know

  • Officials said the ‘T-13’ escape tunnel was built to help with rescue efforts in the event of an emergency.
  • The world’s highest rail bridge across the Chenab river in the Kouri region of Reasi district reached a milestone on August 14 when the overarch deck was finished with a golden joint.
  • The breakthrough was accomplished with the use of a blast, and with it, work on the escape tunnel began.
  • “The construction work of escape tunnel (12.895 km) for the longest rail tunnel T-49 between Khari and Banihal stations of Katra under USBRL project was completed today after successfully negotiating major cavity formation,” a senior official engaged in the work was quoted by PTI in its report.
  • “This is the longest escape tunnel of India and its line and level are precisely achieved,” the official said.
  • He described it as a modified horseshoe-shaped tunnel connecting the Sumber station yard on the south side with tunnel T-50 on the north side after passing bridge number 4 across Khoda nullah at Khoda hamlet.
  • Sumber’s south end is roughly 1400.5 metres high, while the north end is 1558.84 metres high.
  • Tunnel T-49 is a twin tube tunnel with a main tunnel (12.75 km) and an escape tunnel (12.895 km) linked by 33 cross-passages, according to authorities.
  • Several obstacles were faced during construction, including a shear zone, perched aquifer, heavily jointed rock mass, and considerable water infiltration, among others.
  • 161 kilometres of the entire 272 kilometres of the USBRL project have already been commissioned and operationalized.
  • The 111-kilometer balancing work between Katra and Banihal is moving quickly, according to authorities.
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