New Delhi/Visakhapatnam: RINL-VSP, the only shore-based integrated steel plant on the Eastern coast, having its own captive oxygen plant primarily for the process of steelmaking, stands with the nation in its fight against the prevailing pandemic and has already supplied more than 9,000 ton of liquid medical Oxygen since onset.
Besieged with the crisis of supplying LMO to far-flung places like Maharashtra, soon after when the decision was made for transportation by Indian Railways on April 18, the RINL collective sprung into action with the active participation of Indian Railways. Appreciating the urgency, the assessment of the Road & Rail logistics inside the plant, finalization of rail track and the site for RO-RO facility was done on 18th April itself and a RAMP for facilitating Roll On -Roll Off (RORO) services was constructed within thirty hours.
The First Oxygen Express from Maharashtra, with seven empty cryogenic tankers having a total carrying capacity of more than 100-ton liquid medical Oxygen, reached the plant site in early hours at 4.00 AM on April 22, at the newly built RAMP within the plant premises opposite the new Wire Rod Mil-2. Out of seven tankers, four tankers were of 16 Ton capacity and three were of 14 ton. The tankers anchored to the flat wagons with clamps and D-shackles were in deflated tyre condition and tanks in the pressurized condition of more than desired one Kg. Each (14 tyres mounted) tankers tyres were inflated with a mobile pressure Pump, De-clamped and pressure inside the tanks were brought down to one Kg before rolling out on the road via the ramp. From there, tankers were taken for pre -weighed and then to the filling station at ASP-1 and ASU-5. One tanker needed to be purged as earlier it was used for Nitrogen transportation. The filling from Oxygen was done following all safety protocols. Controller of Explosives (AP & Pondicherry) officials inspected the Oxygen filling station and site of loading and briefed the personnel & crew members on various safety aspects to his satisfaction.
RINL’s Chairman & Managing Director (CMD) PK Rath and Indian Railway’s DRM (East Coast Railway) CK Shrivastava along with all Directors of RINL and senior officials of East Coast Railways & RINL-VSP visited the site to take stock and expedite the process of safe dispatch.
By evening 6 O’clock all the 7 tankers filled up with a total of 102 tons of LMO were brought to the ramp and Roll-On to the Flat wagon. Thereafter again the tyres pressures were decreased substantially to minimize the safe overall height of the tanker as supervised and to the satisfaction of railway personnel. The tankers were again anchored to the flat wagon with strapping and D-Shackles for safe transport. Finally, the First Oxygen Expressed Chugged -off Steel Plant site at 10.00 PM on April 22 for a journey of hope to alleviate the suffering of COVID patients in Maharashtra.
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