Elephant-Train collisions: Five recommendations to be submitted to Minister

15 October 2018 07:37 am - 4     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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In the wake of the elephant-train collision along the Northern and Eastern railway lines, a team of 14 officials of the Railway Department and the Wildlife Conservation appointed for preventing elephant-train collisions had come up with five recommendations to prevent the disaster.

The team had engaged in the observation of elephant transit points along the Northern and Eastern railway lines from Mahawa Railway station, Trincomalee, Batticaloa, Anuradhapura, Thalaimannar and Kankasanthurai from October 11-14.

The team was appointed on the instruction of the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation Nimal Siripala de Silva to observe elephant transit points along the Northern and Eastern railway lines and to make recommendations in preventing elephant-train collisions.

The ministry said around 12 elephants have died within a short period due to elephant-train collisions.

The observation team to submit five recommendations to the Minister based comprehensive plan which had been formulated by a committee of intellectuals and academics to resolve this issue.

The final committee report, plan and financial estimate for the implementation of recommendations would be handed over to the Minister by October 25.

The five recommendations are: clearing of shrubs in an area up to 30 metres on either side of the railway track, enforcing train speed limits, building paths (overpasses and underpasses) for elephant crossings on multiple locations, removal of obstructions in elephant crossings at locations with bridges and building of electric fences at places where elephants enter.

The observation team comprised R.A. Sumanaweera, Director, Elephant Conservation of the Wildlife Department, Suranga Jayawardana, Officer in charge of Engine Drivers, Department of Railways, Chaminda Perera, District Transport Inspector, Department of Railways and Irosh Perera, Project Director, Elephant Collisions, Department of Railways.(Darshana Sanjeewa)

  Comments - 4

  • Jaliya Monday, 15 October 2018 09:36 AM

    By reading these recommendations I can only come to a conclusion that these people who call themselves professionals in the industry are anything but the professionals ..... they know as much as the elephant behavior as my 12 year old daughter who lives in Amsterdam.

    catdog Monday, 15 October 2018 09:46 AM

    That clearing of shrubs clause may become an excuse for deforestation.

    Maru Monday, 15 October 2018 11:58 AM

    Incompleteness in recommendations. Electrify the entire rail line on either side, and have underpasses for elephants to cross over. Also hot spots should be identified and have solar powered flood lights to be switched on by motion sensors ( programmed to elephant body heat). All this could be locally done.

    Observer Monday, 15 October 2018 12:28 PM

    Surprise. There is a post of "Project Director-Elephant Collisions"But, there has been only 12 collisions in the recent past. Poor show???


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