In a first, the Maharashtra State Electricity Transmission Company (MSETCL) has started using drones for inspection of power lines and transmission towers, the state energy ministry said on Saturday.
After Maharashtra energy minister Nitin Raut proposed the use of drones -- unmanned aerial vehicles -- for this purpose, the Union home ministry and Director General of Civil Aviation gave the nod, an official statement said.
Drones are now being used for aerial surveillance and inspection of Extra High Voltage (EHV) lines and towers in remote areas of the state, it said.
It can cut maintenance costs and losses from outages, it said, adding that surveillance through drones is more efficient than manual survey of power lines and detects faults in lines quicker.
These drones are equipped with ultra HD cameras which can take high-resolution close-up photographs and videos of the towers and their components.