Maritime vanguard

Ahmed Shatil Alam sheds light on a technology that can curb the number of accidents in the river-ways of the country



In Bangladesh, one of the major and popular ways for public commute is water transport due to hundreds of inter-connected rivers. But every year, hundreds of people die due to the accidents, mainly launch capsize, occurring in the water bodies.

According to the available data collected from Department of Shipping (DOS), a total of 2,313 people had died through 49 launch capsize incidents over the past 24 years starting from 1991 to 2015. The DOS also notified the causes of these launch capsize accidents and found that one of the major causes of these accidents is overloading.

Keeping the fact in mind a Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology student has come up with a technological procedure through which overloading on launches can be prevented thus stopping the accidents. While talking to New Age Xtra, the innovator of the technology named ‘Riverine Vehicle Tracking System (RVTS)’, Emruz Hossain shared that besides overloading; his application has many other features.

‘If a vessel applies my technology, then it can automatically stop movement of the vessel if it detects a capacity overload,’ he said.


Emruz said that a sensor attached to the vessels will sense the load capacity. ‘The sensor would know the safety level. Once that level is exceeded, it will stop the engine,’ he said.  Additionally, there will be an alarm bell that will begin ringing.

‘Every marine vessel has a part that remains submerged when the vessel is stationary or is moving in the water. When this part sinks more than the marked level, it can be understood that the vessel is carrying more than it should. …and RVTS can detect this overload by measuring how much the submerged part of a vessel has sunk into the water,’ he explained.

Besides, RVTS includes some other features like real time monitoring, user app for passengers, weather forecast and low distance warning facility. With the real time monitoring facility, the real time location and situation of any vessel will be monitored.

‘By this the port authority, launch owners and masses can see and know the current location of any vessel. Therefore when a vessel will face any trouble in the river due to a storm or cyclone then their location and situation can be easily pinpointed,’ said Emruz.

An app has also been developed for the masses that will allow anyone to get proper information on the launches, their routes and availability of seats. Emruz also shared that this app is necessary for thousands who regularly commute through water ways. ‘This app will be a one-stop-service and information point for commuters which will provide them with all sorts of information about the vessels plying the waterways in Bangladesh,’ he says.

The RVTS also can forecast the weather which is mandatory for water ways communication. Besides, the technology can warn the masters of the launches as soon as any vessel or similar object comes dangerously close.

‘Collision between two vessels can be a serious problem. This particular feature can help the masters and crew,’ he says.

Emruz has showcased his prototype at the innovation zone at ICT EXPO 2017 held last week in capital’s Bangabandhu International Conference Center. The innovation was appreciated by visitors and technological experts alike.

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