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Sunday, April 14, 2013

CRATER MUMBAI Soon, shoot & upload videos on pothole-tracking system

Mumbai: You will soon be able to upload videos of pockmarked stretches on the civic body's pothole-tracking website. At present, citizens can only upload pictures clicked through their android phones. The video feature, too, will be available only to users of android phones. 

    The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) 
is working on adding the video feature to its potholetracking website which was launched in November 2011. 
    "There are long uneven stretches on our roads and a photo or a group of photos alone cannot show the extent of the problem. The video feature will help us gauge the situation on the ground and 
tackle potholes more effectively," said additional municipal commissioner Aseem Gupta. 
    The high-tech potholetracking system (www.voiceofcitizen.com), which cost the BMC Rs 60 lakh, allows citizens to upload photos of potholes and geo tag them. Once a photo is upload, an en
gineer from the BMC's roads department is assigned the job of ensuring that the contractor concerned fixes it within 48 hours. Failure to do so results in the engineer being penalized. The same procedure will be followed in case of video recordings. 
    The BMC's pothole-tracking system has had its share 
of bumpy rides with a section of citizens, civic officials and politicians criticizing it. While citizens and politicians were upset that the software was for users of android phones only, engineers had alleged that they were fined because of glitches in the system. The BMC, however, stood its ground and continued to operate the system. 
    The BMC has also added three more technologies to fill potholes this year. This takes the total number of technologies available with the contractors for filling up potholes to six. Experts pointed out that the BMC should have waited for the pothole audit report before deciding to use cold mix technology to fix potholes this year too. 
    "These three technologies were finalized after approval from the standing technical advisory committee," added Gupta. 

HOW THE SYSTEM WORKS 

    After downloading the pothole-tracking software from www.voiceofcitizen.com, android phone users can upload photos of craters and pinpoint their location on a map provided on the website 
    Concerned BMC engineers are alerted about new uploads 
    Status of pothole repair can be tracked on the website 
    Engineers have to ensure that the potholes are fixed in 48 hours, failing which they 
are penalized 
    Same procedure will have to followed for uploading video 
    Once the video facility is activated, those of have already downloaded the app will receive an update alert


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