Awareness workshop on elephant deaths due to railway accidents

Posted on
27 June 2015
WWF-India organized a workshop at a railway station camp, Dehradun with the Railway staff and Forest department, to explore the various steps that could be taken to reduce elephant and other wildlife mortality on railway tracks. The primary objective of the workshop was to generate awareness among key railway staff and to maintain and improve coordination between the railways and forest departments. The workshop was attended by 57 railways staff and officials, 15 forest department staff/ officials, as well as staff from the WWF-India Dehradun Programme office. From the Moradabad division, Northern railways department, 33 of the participants were loco-pilots, loco-assistants and guards.
The following highlights were discussed in more detail at the workshop:
  • Various processes implemented at the Rajaji Tiger Reserve have helped to improve coordination between forest and railway departments.
  • Frequent clearing of foliage near the railway tracks would improve the visibility for locomotive drivers to spot animals, and therefore was deemed to be a crucial process that should be regularly undertaken.
  • Improvement of communication between the departments by learning from earlier successes and failures is essential. Communication between station masters and the forest department, particularly about elephant movement, has been enabled via established wireless channels at various stations. This information is relayed to the loco pilots by the station masters.
  • Smart infrastructure such as underpasses for wildlife movement under the culverts would need to be planned at feasible sites.
  • Blind curves on railway tracks should be properly fenced, to avoid collisions at these risk-prone areas.
  • Regular  felicitation of railway staff in charge of accident prevention would help boost morale and maintain diligence.
Awareness activities should be undertaken for train passengers to reduce garbage and waste food disposal in and around park regions.

For Further information:
Anil Kumar Singh
Team leader, Terai Arc Landscape
M: +91 9760111709


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