Augmenting Women’s Safety-in-Numbers in Railway Carriages with Wireless Sensor Networks

  • Anusha Rahul
  • Vishnu Narayanan
  • Alin Devassy
  • Anand Ramachandran
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 380)


Sexual harassment of women traveling on railway carriages is a widespread problem. The predominant method used to address this problem is for women to travel in groups, utilizing Safety-in-Numbers, to hinder and discourage attacks against them. However, when the number of women in a railway carriage is low, there is no safety system in place to detect the imminent danger and proactively alert security personnel. In this work, we consider a system that keeps track of the number of passengers in a railway carriage using a wireless sensor network and automatically notifies security personnel when the number of passengers goes below a certain threshold. Here, we consider different scenarios and evaluate if our solution approach will work in the different cases considered. We also evaluated different techniques for automatically counting the number of people aboard a railway carriage. Our initial experimental results show that we are able to estimate the number of people in a room (considered in lieu of a railway carriage) with a high degree of accuracy using the background subtraction method. We hope that the proposed architecture in concert with the people counting technique will be able to significantly improve the safety of women traveling in railway carriages.


Background subtraction Global system for mobile communications railway (GSM-R) OpenCV/C++ People counting Wireless sensor network (WSN) 



We would like to express our sincere gratitude to our respected teachers, friends, and family for their continued love and support. Our sincere thanks are due to the Department of Wireless Networks and Applications, which provided the tools, infrastructure, and equipment as well as the opportunity and impetus to do this research. We would also like to express our gratitude to our beloved Chancellor Sri. Mata Amritanandamayi Devi (AMMA) for the immeasurable motivation and encouragement that she has provided for doing this work.


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Copyright information

© Springer India 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anusha Rahul
    • 1
  • Vishnu Narayanan
    • 2
  • Alin Devassy
    • 3
  • Anand Ramachandran
    • 1
  1. 1.Amrita Center for Wireless Networks and ApplicationsAmrita UniversityCoimbatoreIndia
  2. 2.Department of Electronics and Communication EngineeringAmrita UniversityCoimbatoreIndia
  3. 3.Analog Devices IncCoimbatoreIndia

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