New Delhi: To ensure punctual running of trains during the winter, the Railways has planned to us GPS-enabled fog safety devices to alert the locomotive pilot about the approaching signals.

A railway official told IANS that plans were afoot to use the GPS-based devices in trains that would provide advance warning.

The official said that the Railways has provided about 2,400 of these devices in northern India where trains are worst-hit by intense fog during winter.

He said 900 of these GPS devices have been given to the Delhi zone.

Besides, the Railways will also deploy fogmen to place detonators on the tracks to alert the loco pilots about approaching signals.

Officials will undertake intensive night foot plate inspection and track patrolling to detect cases of rail fracture, a major cause of derailment during winter.

The auto signalling system will also be converted to semi-automatic and speed restrictions will be imposed during an intense fog situation.

The Railways is also planning to provide sufficient walkie-talkie sets to the crew and station staff. They will also provide signal indication booklet to loco pilots, and carry out counselling on working during fog.

During intense fog situations the Railways faces problems like shortage of crew due to longer working hours on a train due to slower mobility, complete disorientation of timetable, heavy crowding of waiting passengers and non-availability of track maintenance slots due to reduced capacity.