The police have already approached the sponsors for providing either a UPS or solar power back up for the remaining signals

With prolonged power cuts during the day and the peak-hour traffic at night, traffic signals in the city are fast turning into tall monuments. Hence, the city police are expediting their plans to go in for Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS) and solar power back up for all the signals with the help of sponsors, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Crime and Traffic) T. Senthilkumar told The Hindu.

Of the 47 signals in the city, six have UPS back up. They are Uppilipalayam Junction, LIC Junction, Anna Statue, Lakshmi Mills Junction on Avanashi Road besides 100 ft road and Gandhipuram signal. Of them, the Lakshmi Mills Junction, 100 feet road and Gandhipuram have solar power back up as well. The flash signal near Krishnammal College for Women is solar powered. The solar-powered signal at New Scheme Road – Avanashi Road Junction has 24-hour back up.

Even these signals with UPS and solar have a problem withstanding the long hours of power cut. Traffic constables struggling to regulate traffic manually is becoming a common sight on signals across the city. Sometimes, the constable go missing from the scene of action, leaving it for motorists to try their skills. In one such incident, a two-wheeler rider from Ramanathapuram fell off his vehicle at the Brooke Bond Road – Devanga High School Junction and suffered fracture. The UPS power back up is cost effective at Rs. 60,000 for three to three-and-a-half-hours, but solar power back up will work out to Rs. 1.8 lakh to Rs 2 lakh, depending on the number of roads in the particular junction, says Shyam Jude of Analog and Digital Labs.

The police have already approached the sponsors for providing either a UPS or solar power back up for the remaining signals. Special attention is being paid on Mettupalayam Road which has been identified for the next Green Corridor project.

With regard to absence of constables at signals during power cuts, Mr.Senthilkumar said that instructions would be given asking them to make sure that they don’t disappear leaving the road free for the motorists. At nights, the policemen would be asked to regulate traffic with the help of reflective jackets and batons. More jackets and batons were being procured, he said.