MCD to upgrade surveillance at Ghazipur landfill site in bid to curb blazes

Updated on Aug 08, 2022 04:11 AM IST

The civic body has invited bids from private vendors to install and operate the camera surveillance system. The live feed from the system will be made available to sanitation department officials, a corporation official said.

There are currently 17 cameras over 70 acres of the landfill, and the municipality intends to install another 20 CCTV cameras at critical areas at the garbage dump.(Photo by Raj K Raj/Hindustan Times)
There are currently 17 cameras over 70 acres of the landfill, and the municipality intends to install another 20 CCTV cameras at critical areas at the garbage dump.(Photo by Raj K Raj/Hindustan Times)

To reduce fires at the Ghazipur landfill in east Delhi and for their early detection, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi plans to install a new surveillance system by placing additional CCTV cameras at vulnerable locations and methane generation hot spots where fires break out frequently.

The civic body has invited bids from private vendors to install and operate the camera surveillance system. The live feed from the system will be made available to sanitation department officials, a corporation official said, declining to be named.

There are currently 17 cameras over 70 acres of the landfill, and the municipality intends to install another 20 CCTV cameras at critical areas at the garbage dump.

The civic body plans to install cameras at fresh waste dumping points, trommels (which segregate waste), machineries, weighbridge, goat market, canal side, slaughterhouse, periphery of the waste to energy plant and Gazipur dairy side. The corporation will install 30m high poles to install the cameras.

“We plan to install nigh vision enabled cameras that can be operational in all-weather conditions and recording footage will be kept for at least four days. We need an additional 20 cameras,” another official explained, seeking anonymity. The monitoring office will be located in engineering room at the dump.

The Ghazipur landfill has seen several major fires this year on March 28, and April 9 and 20. The erstwhile East Delhi Municipal Corporation had planned to build a boundary wall to improve security, but the project was estimated to cost 25 crore, which the cash-strapped agency could not afford.

An improved surveillance system can prevent fires triggered by waste pickers and would help in early detection of fires caused by methane generation due to decomposition of waste, officials said.

The civic body should first develop material recovery centres near the landfill where waste can be segregated, according to Jai Prakash Chaudhary, secretary of Safai Sena, an organisation of waste collectors.

“MCD can develop material recovery centres where waste pickers can help them in waste segregation, while also feeding their families. No one willingly wants to go on top of a landfill,” he said.

Spread over 70 acres, the Gazipur garbage dump was established in 1984 and should have been shut down in 2002. A section of the oversaturated landfill collapsed in September 2017, claiming two lives.

All three landfill sites in Delhi are way past their expiry dates. Every year they witness several incidents of massive fires. In the long run, the municipal body has been advised by an expert committee to set up watchtowers to monitor any unauthorized entry and to deploy temperature sensors for early detection of fires.

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