Mangalore Electricity Supply Company (MESCOM) Limited has shown the way to use drones in times of crisis. Making the best use of drone for disaster management, MESCOM laid three power supply wires across a river in Kodagu, Dakshina Kannada.
Due to heavy rains, electricity lines were snapped as a tree, getting washed away in the Kumaradhara River, damaged the poles. Power supply was disrupted in the Adekkal region, where a high-tension line from the Uppinangady feeder supplies electricity.
But the MESCOM restored power supply temporarily to about 4,000 houses in 10 villages on the Adekallu side by diverting electricity from a different feeder. However, it was not possible to divert the power for long due to overloading and tripping issues.
“Till December, crossing the river may be difficult so, we decided to use drones to restore power supply to these villages,” said Ramachandra A N, Assistant Executive Engineer.
The drones were deployed to send three kinds of weight-bearing nylon ropes to the other side. The drone first carried light weight nylon rope from one end to the other. It flew to both sides repeatedly carrying such nylon ropes until it became a strong rope. Later, this nylon rope was used to pull the power supply wires from one bank to the other and they were later tied to electricity supply poles at both the ends.
Mr Ramachandra said that the three-day operation involving a 30-member team with 15 each on both the banks of the river was not easy however, the trial became a success boosting the confidence that in times of such emergencies the same method can be adopted.