Double-Track Speed: Yogyakarta, Central Java

For those of you that have visited Yogyakarta, you will no doubt have, at some time or another on your visit, crossed the railway lines whilst sitting in a becak. For those that haven’t, let me tell you it’s a bone rattling bumpy crossing!.

What made me laugh over the years I lived there was when the crossing was closed momentarily whilst a train passed. As soon as the boom gates lifted it was a mad dash to get position on the road resulting in the becaks getting their wheels stuck in the deep ruts alongside the railway track.

Perhaps it will be better now that state railway company PT Kereta Api Indonesia started operating its newly built double-track railway from Yogyakarta to Surakarta (Solo) in Central Java on Tuesday, in a bid to help speed up railway transportation between the two cities.

Mochtadi, a spokesman from the company’s Yogyakarta office, said that the operation of the new facility would substantially reduce railway density and at the same time enable the company to increase the frequency of its trains.

“The operation of the double track is expected to increase the frequency of trains to 120 (per day) from only 75 earlier,” Mochtadi said.

He said he also expected that the new track would cut delays and shorten travel time between the two cities by around 10 minutes.

Mochtadi added that motorists needed to take care while driving through double-track crossings.

“They need to be more watchful to avoid accidents,” he added.

— JP