13 October 2016

A break through for BridgeWatch®.

BridgeWatch® Modular makes critical structure monitoring affordable to all asset managers.

James Fisher Strainstall's (JF Strainstall) BridgeWatch® is deployed on some of the world's largest and most strategically important infrastructure to provide real-time remote monitoring information and warnings of impending structural issues.

In doing so it helps operators protect public safety and enable cost savings through planned and proactive maintenance. BridgeWatch® is used to protect major bridges across the UK motorway network, as well as strategic infrastructure such as its planned deployment on Scotland's new Forth Crossing.

Until now the capital costs of implementation has tended to restrict the use of remote monitoring technology to higher value strategic infrastructure. In order to make its benefits available to the public and private sector operators of smaller buildings, bridges and tunnels, JF Strainstall is today announcing the latest generation of its service, known as BridgeWatch® Modular.

With zero set-up, installation and equipment costs, customers of the new BridgeWatch® Modular service contract to pay a fixed monthly fee for remote structural monitoring. In exchange they receive online accessible reports of their structures, customised to their own specific requirements – including, for example, the use of SMS or e-mail alarms as an alert to signs of possible structural problems. All equipment is installed and maintained by JF Strainstall and remains its responsibility, so costs are entirely predictable and fixed from the outset.

Simon Whitford, managing director of JF Strainstall Monitoring, commented on this saying:

"The launch of this next-generation BridgeWatch® Modular service is an exciting step-forward in extending the benefits of remote structural monitoring to smaller bridges, tunnels and other safety or commercially critical infrastructure. Capital budget restrictions may prevent the remote monitoring of structures where its use could have provided tangible benefits. For example, structures may have been closed to the public prematurely or worse, experienced unexpected disruptive, expensive and potentially dangerous failures, where better advanced knowledge of their condition might have enabled proactive maintenance to reduce costs and safely extend operational life."

Mr Whitford continued to say: 

"In designing the new BridgeWatch® Modular service we have eliminated all capital costs, and are offering remote monitoring for a fixed monthly fee. This is much easier for hard-pressed public and private sector operators to budget for against the benefits they receive, not least in terms of the peace of mind that they have protected public safety and can proactively maintain their structures using world-class remote monitoring technology. BridgeWatch® Modular is also flexible in terms of installation, and JF Strainstall can provide a range of options from a self-install package through to a full turnkey solution – it is all in the hands of the customer." 

A further significant benefit that customers of the new BridgeWatch® Modular service can access is the provision – at a very modest additional cost – of periodic visual inspections of the monitored elements within BridgeWatch® protected structures. As JF Strainstall's highly qualified and experienced engineers make periodic visits to maintain the installed monitoring equipment as part of the BridgeWatch® Modular service, they can also capture a visual record of the monitored element without having to arrange additional visits.

Finally, Mr Whitford spoke of the attractiveness of additional services to customers:

"We believe that this additional service will be extremely attractive to customers. Owners and operators of smaller structures often struggle to carry out their own regular visual inspections within tight budgetary constraints. The fact that we have JF Strainstall engineers visiting our monitored sites on a regular basis, makes this a highly affordable optional extension to the BridgeWatch® Modular service. As such we can provide, at low cost, valuable qualitative information to augment the remote monitoring data."