Indian Railways Modernization: Battery Operated Cars For Disabled & Elderly; TRI NETRA To Avoid Train Accidents
The Indian Railways seems to be gobbling down some news space as it brings out new reforms. The first one is: It has decided to introduce Battery operated cars (BoC) to make it convenient for disabled, ailing and elderly citizens in major railway stations. Using BoC will help them move around without straining themselves and will mitigate any impending dangers. But however it will be a paid service and the service has been outsourced to private firms and will pilot on 75 stations.
The facility can be procured by travelers on first come first serve basis directly. Keeping in mind the convenience of aged travelers, the facility can also be booked in advance. Other facilities which can be used, like pick up and drop facilities, porters, wheelchairs etc can also be booked in advance and through the IRCTC’s mobile app, website or calling the helpline 139. The mobile app however is under development but is scheduled to be launched soon.
This facility was first introduced in the Konkan Railway line in the name “Sarathi Seva” and has been garnering much deserved praises by it’s users for making it easier for senior citizens to travel without much physical problem.
The second reform is the introduction of TRI NETRA device. In the light of many unfortunate accidents, the Indian Railways also introduced a new accident avoidance system called TRI-NETRA.
This will help in accident mitigation and will alert the driver on any physical blocks on the tracks which could occur on unmanned crossings, derailment and possible train collisions. Most number of accidents in a train journey have been reported to happen during the night or the wee hours of the morning and due to fog, drivers can’t really identify any physical hindrance awaiting on the tracks.
TRI NETRA or the “Terrain Imaging for Diesel Drivers- Infrared Enhanced Optical and Radar Assisted” is a device which will procure information of any physical barrier on the tracks through it’s radar assisted, infra red enabled device and will help alert the drivers to halt when the device alerts about any obstacle on the tracks.
The Railway ministry informed the media that six countries (France, Switzerland, Japan being some) are interested in installing such devices for the Indian Railways and to test implement, the ministry will install these devices on 100 trains and check it’s effectiveness.
The purchase of this device is a must keeping in light the horrible train accidents that have occurred in the past. The TRI NETRA device will draw images of any kinds of physical obstruction on the tracks up to 2-3km.
This information can help the driver plan for unforeseen impediments well before in advance. A whole new system of upgradation is under way for making railways safe. A railway official on the occasion said, “These devices can easily sense the presence of any uprooted tree or boulder lying on the railway tracks. If a vehicle has broken down on the rail tracks, the device can notice them well in advance.”
However the ministry also plans to implement homegrown accident mitigation device called Train Collision Avoidance System (TCAS) developed by the Research Designs and Standards Organisation which was successfully tested on a 250km track on Secundarabad track.
Also the ministry has agreed on reducing unmanned level crossings, upgradation of signals and setting up of train collision avoidance systems, track renewals etc to make the railway line devoid of accidents. The TRI NETRA device and BoC for the aged are two new reforms that needs to be implemented right away. A big thumbs up for the new reforms!