NDRF uses sonar to locate vehicles that sank in river
The NDRF on Saturday used sonar system and underwater cameras to detect the position of buses and cars swept away in the raging Savitri river when a British-era bridge collapsed in Mahad on Tuesday night. However, the systems failed to locate any missing vehicle till evening.
On Sunday , the NDRF will again use the sonar system mounted on a boat across a major stretch of the river till Ambet, about 25-30 km away from the accident spot. The marine commandos will also use inflatable boats in their search attempt on Sunday . NDRF sources said a collective decision on continuing the operation will be taken only late Sunday evening.
Meanwhile, the NDRF and the Navy’s Marine commandos found two seats of buses, a rooftop carrier of Tavera, and a piece of a metal roof of the bus floating near Dadli bridge, 6 km from the collapsed Poladpur bridge. The search team also retrieved two bodies -one of them in Bankot, about 50 km from Poladpur bridge.
On Saturday , the NDRF used sonar system between the Poladpur bridge and Dadli bridge -a six-km stretch where experts think the vehicles are stuck under the river. They say buses can’t move beyond Dadli as it’s a narrow bridge.For the first time, the NDRF also deployed four hi-tech underwater cameras near the collapsed bridge to find the missing vehicles.
Prior to this, such gadgets were only used in seas and oceans. The cameras are attached to the base of four boats, while an LCD screen is kept above to monitor the recordings up to a depth of 400 feet. The weather on Saturday was suitable for this operation as the intensity of rains has also reduced.
Coast Guard Commandant RK Singh said, “The Navy , Coast Guard, NDRF , district administration, police and an NGO, White Army , from Malvan used sonar, Fish-finder, 15kg magnets fixed to boats and around 15 boats for the operation on Saturday .“
The Raigad resident deputy collector Satish Bagal said, “We had approached the ISRO for remote sensing image of the river. The request was turned down as remote sensing is not done inside water.“
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