Indian Railways has decided to deploy “Drone” cameras (UAV/NETRA) for various railway activities especially project monitoring and maintenance of tracks and other railway infrastructure. It has been given directions to Zonal Railways to procure such cameras. This is in-line with Railways’ desire to use technology to enhance safety and efficiency in train operations.
Drone cameras shall be deployed to undertake monitoring activities of relief and rescue operation, project monitoring, progress of important works, conditions of track and inspection related activities. They shall also be used to assess preparedness of Non-Interlocking (NI) works, crowd management during fairs and melas, to identify scrap and also for aerial survey of station yards. They are going to be instrumental in providing real time inputs related to safety and maintenance of tracks and other railway infrastructure.
Under this initiative, West Central Railways with headquarters at Jabalpur (M.P) has become the first Zonal Railway to procure Drone cameras in Indian Railways. West Central Railways has already done a trial-run of those cameras on all its three divisions in the following locations:
1. Jabalpur Division – Narmada Bridge near Bhitoni
2. Bhopal Division – (i) Nishatpura Yard; (ii) Third Line work between HBJ – Misrod.
3. Kota Division – (i) Chambal Bridge near Kota; (ii) Dakania Talav Yard near Kota.
WCR further plans to use Drones for project monitoring in 3rd line work of Bina-Katni, Doubling work in Katni-Singrauli, Important Bridge inspections and Monsoon preparedness in deep cutting portions of Ghat Sections of Bhopal and Jabalpur Divisions. Earlier, demonstration of Drone camera was done for project monitoring of Railway Electrification work of Jabalpur Yard