Following the unfortunate accidents that killed many elephants and the absence of effective measures to prevent them, Animal Equality wrote to the environment and forests minister urging them to consider the suggestions, including installation of radar sensors on the train to detect animal presence (mobile and immobile) on the tracks.
Last year, at a meeting between the railway minister and the MoEF, the use of technological gadgets, which will be a cost-effective mechanism in the long run, was emphasized. It was also decided to entrust IIT Delhi with the task of developing the device and to run the pilot project preferably in the forest areas of north West Bengal.
“Our letter with suggestions was forwarded by the MoEF to the ministry of railways in 2010. Sensor devices are used by international car companies and also on some trains and ships. The devices have proved useful in avoiding collisions,” said Ubale.
To prevent incidents of elephants getting hit by trains, the ministry of railways and the ministry of environment and forests (MoEF) will join hands to carry out a project wherein the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi, will develop a wireless sensor device.
The device – wild animal protection system – will detect the presence of elephants on railway tracks and activate a signal system that would alert the station master to warn trains to slow down or stop.
The information given as response to an RTI inquiry (dated June 1), states that the wireless sensor device will be ready for trial in 2016.