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New lightweight barrier system for unprotected rail crossings – Minister

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Transport, Highways and Mass Media Minister Dr. Bandula Gunawardhana told Parliament yesterday that a new lightweight barrier system designed within this country at the lowest cost will be introduced to prevent accidents at unprotected rail crossings. He said the National Council for Road Safety will provide Rs.750 million for this endeavour and the rest of the money is expected to be collected from the philanthropists.

The Minister said that an experiment was carried out at the Godagama railway station on the last Poson Poya day to introduce a new system to the accident prone points on the Kelani Valley railway line and it was successful. The system is expected to be installed with a minimum amount of Rs.1.5 million and it will be implemented as a social care programme. Minister Dr.Bandula Gunawardhana stated this while replying to a question raised by MP Kins Nelson.

He said the Sri Lanka German Railway Technical Training Centre, Ratmalana will be merged with a university in Russia to improve its status. The Minister further said that there are plans to upgrade this so that workers can be sent to the international level and we are holding discussions with a Russian university in this regard. We have also planned to recruit all those who come out of it to the Railway Department, he said.

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