London’s underground network will install 30,000 RFID tags on around 300 escalators by 2010, to reduce repair times from five hours to 45 minutes.

At present engineers can take up to five hours to log each step along the escalator. The RFID tags will be fixed to the back of each step and combined with a reader placed into a cradle alongside the escalator.

This technology will reduce the time taken to log a escalator to around 45 minutes.

RFID should reduce the underground engineer’s overtime and give scope to concentrate on the rest of the tube.

The technology has already been used on two escalators in Moorgate station and one in Victoria station.