Mumbai: Maharashtra government is considering the use of drones to monitor, identify and control vehicles breaking traffic rules. Minister of State for Home (Urban) Deepak Kesarkar said initially, drones would be put in place on a pilot basis on the Mumbai-Pune expressway.
A meeting was held between officials of the Home department and Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation earlier this week at the Mantralaya in Mumbai, which was attended by Kesarkar and PWD (undertakings) minister Eknath Shinde.
Kesarkar said Mumbai-Pune expressway has become a “death trap” with a large number of road casualties reported lately. “Incidents of road accidents have increased due to indiscipline and rash driving. We do not have control over rash driving as the length of the express way is long and there is insufficient police staff for surveillance,” Kesarkar said.
He said while there is a need to control vehicular traffic, doing so by using a CCTV camera has its own limitations. Thus, the idea of using drones has been mooted. “The drones will be used at load line of the ‘ghat’ on expressway where setting up of CCTV cameras is not possible,” he said.
Mostly heavy loaded trucks jump lanes to overtake other big vehicles. This causes a traffic jam. The drones would click photos of such instances and the the Transport department will take action against errant drivers,” he added.
The minister said that even small vehicles would not be spared if found violating lane discipline. He said the site of using drones has not been decided as yet but the MSRDC would submit its report suggesting requirement within the next 15 days.
“Initially, four to five drone will be hired from private companies for the expressway. Depending upon the result, the Home department is considering to use drones across Mumbai,” he said.
Along with CCTVs, usage of drones in the island city would take the burden of traffic police riddled with various woes, Kesarkar said.