"The long-pending demand to fix global positioning system (GPS) in water tankers and online monitoring is finally becoming a reality.Chennai Metrowater will be fitting GPS equipment in nearly 700 water lorries that operate on contract in a bid to curb unaccounted trips.
The GPS plan was proposed nearly six years ago but did not take off.With the volume of piped water supply declining over the past few months, water tankers are used increasingly to bridge the gap across the city grappling with water shortage this summer.At present, about 650 million litres is being supplied on alternate days with the available resources. Of this, nearly 55 mld to 60 mld is being provided through about 6,000 tanker trips every day.
According to Metrowater officials, the number of tanker trips are steadily on the rise. On an average, each tanker is plying 9 to 10 trips every day and this includes trips on payment.
Officials said the tender process will be completed in a month and the water tankers will be fitted with GPS equipment by mid-June at a cost of ₹80 lakh. A centralised online system is also being developed to track the trips.Smart card based system
At present, the trips and routes are being noted down manually in the records of Metrowater offices at the filling points. In a bid to streamline the system that has chances of pilferage, the water agency is also planning to install a smart card based online monitoring system in the 191 filling points under the Smart City Mission.
“We are planning to integrate the GPS tracking system and the online monitoring for a foolproof system and accountable water trips. The first step towards this would be GPS fitted vehicles,” said an official.
According to the proposal, smart card would be used for the operation of the valves at the filling point. After the required volume gets dispensed, the valves would close saving precious water, officials said"
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