Bangalore goes hi-tech to tackle traffic snarls
B-TRAC will help traffic police to help commuters avoid congested locations through SMSes, web, electronic billboards and helplines.Updated: Jun 03, 2007 21:40 IST
Electronic billboards, SMSes and handheld devices are among the new technologies that will now be used to check traffic jams on the narrow and potholed roads of India's IT capital.
The traffic police are also attempting to discipline Bangalore's unruly three-wheeler autorickshaws and make them passenger-friendly.
Calling their campaign the "B-TRAC 2010", the traffic police on Friday formally launched BTIS - Bangalore Transport Information System - for real time traffic monitoring.
Cell phone signals will be used to keep an eye on traffic movement. The B-TRAC is being implemented at an estimated cost of Rs 400 million, a senior city police official said.
Information gathered through this system will be made available to vehicle users via SMS, the web, electronic billboards and helplines to enable commuters to avoid congested locations. The information will help police tell commuters the estimated time required to reach a destination.
A website, www.btis.in, has also been launched so that one can become familiarise with the system.
Apart from traffic snarls, a major problem is violation of traffic rules and regulations. To haul up the guilty, a large number of policemen are being provided with Blackberry handsets.
The device will help police book cases on the spot and serve notice through wireless pocket printers. It will also enable police to keep track of past violations. Repeated violations will mean cancellation of the driving license.
Bangalore has nearly 100,000 three-wheeler autorickshaws and not a day passes without arguments breaking out between passengers and drivers on issues like overcharging, refusal to go to certain areas and rash driving.
At important places such as the main city bus stand, the railway station and the airport there are pre-paid auto counters manned by police. Here too passengers face problems once the auto leaves the place.
To get over such problems, the 'easyauto' service is being launched. All that one has to do is SMS or call a particular number to get an auto. One can book these autos through the net by logging on to www.easyauto.in.co.
However, not all auto drivers/owners have taken up the scheme. Only a few thousand have agreed to be part of this service, which offers them a free cell phone and insurance cover. Police expect the majority of autos to participate in the scheme once they see the benefits being enjoyed by their peers.
The fourth initiative is a lane system to ensure smooth and safe traffic. To begin with, 200 km of roads will sport markings of international standards, a senior traffic police official said.
The B-TRAC 2010 was launched at a function in Bangalore on Friday by chief minister HD Kumaraswamy.