Lanes invests in pole cam technology for faster culvert inspections

The Lanes depot in Tyne & Wear is offering clients a faster and more cost-effective culvert inspection service with the latest pole camera technology.

Its drainage engineers can now quickly provide the most detailed views of large culverts and sewers with its QuickView Zoom camera.

The drainage inspection equipment, the most advanced on the UK market, is ideal for carrying out checks on long runs of culverts and sewers.

It has been found by Lanes to be three times more productive than conventional drainage survey camera technology on straight runs of main culverts.

Lanes Tyne & Wear Area Development Manager Trevor Sawyer said: “We are expecting highways drainage maintenance and railway culvert maintenance clients to be very interested in making use of this service.

“This pole cam allows us to provide a faster service when inspecting medium to large diameter sewers and culverts.

“It’s especially suited to carrying out culvert inspections along straight pipe runs, such as railways lines and major highways and motorways.”

For those sort of drainage maintenance tasks, speed of service and productivity are a key issue as gaining access to the drainage assets can be difficult.

Trevor Sawyer said: “One of the main reasons drainage inspections and surveys are not completed in a timely way along railway lines is because it can only be done during track closures.

“This can result in drainage problems building up over time, leading to additional cost to put matters right at a later date, or ongoing impacts on train services, such as speed restrictions or service delays.

“With safety during highway and motorway drainage maintenance being a number one priority, similar issues apply with this sector too.

“Therefore, having a drainage inspection system which can dramatically increase productivity and is fast and simple to deploy is a major benefit for clients.

“Weather experts are warning that the UK’s weather will become more volatile, causing more frequent periods of heavy rainfall, leading to higher flash flooding risks.

“This means effective maintenance of drainage systems along railways and highways and motorways will become a bigger priority. This pole cam will definitely be a big benefit for clients responsible for maintaining these assets.”

The pole cam has been used by Lanes Group drainage engineers in the West Midlands to carry out inspections of surface water culverts along the M6 Toll Road with very positive results.

The equipment allowed the Lanes team to carry out drainage inspections of three times more pipework than conventional crawler cameras – with a two-person team inspecting up to two kilometres of pipe along the M6 Toll in one shift.

The fully-portable QuickView Zoom camera is mounted on a 7m carbon fibre telescopic pole.

It has 36 times optical and 12 times digital zoom, plus a clever light system that tracks the operator’s zoom setting, so always illuminates the camera’s point of focus.

Trevor Sawyer said: “The pole camera delivers real productivity and cost-saving benefits, allowing clients to carry out drainage inspections that quickly identify where more detailed CCTV surveys are required.”

“As well as highways and rail clients, we expect the system to be in demand from large manufacturing and energy generation clients, which both have long runs of large diameter drainage and production pipework.”

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