For those in the transportation infrastructure industry, especially those working on bridges, doing their jobs as safely, efficiently, and accurately as possible is a major consideration. In addition, being able to do their work quickly without compromising these objectives is important, as well.
Constructing, maintaining, and repairing highway bridges requires certain skills and abilities that involve years of training, education, and experience. And the same is true for those whose work involves highway bridge inspections.
But all the skill sets, training, and tools in the world come up short if workers do not have sufficient access to these structures. Consequently, one of the major components of efficient and accurate bridge work of almost any kind hinges on under bridge and aerial access types of equipment. And this under bridge access often arrives in the form of Under Bridge platforms.
A Broad Look at Highway Bridge Work
Because of the high costs associated with bridge work, and the inherent safety demands for highway bridges, both efficiency and accuracy are top priorities.
And this is especially the case for bridge inspectors. Fortunately, there are several ways to improve the efficiency and accuracy of highway bridge inspections.
One way is to use context-aware computing which offers the possibility to make inspections more efficient by reducing the time required to navigate the software and the effort spent by inspectors to learn, remember, and recall the taxonomic hierarchy and ontology of bridge components.
As an article from the Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering noted,
“Context-aware computing offers the possibility to make inspections more efficient by reducing the time required to navigate the software and the effort spent by inspectors to learn, remember, and recall the taxonomic hierarchy and ontology of bridge components. Context-aware computing leverages environmental variables, which define the inspector’s context, and delivers streamlined information, pertinent to the task at hand, to assist decision-making”.
Another way is to improve the speed of nondestructive examination, or NDE, data collection and interpretation through automation and robotics. Additionally, technological advancements that we can now leverage across our architectural and engineering work. Drones, and other Technologies, promise great efficiency and cost-effectiveness.
Some Practical Points to Consider for Better Bridge Inspections
As anyone in the transportation infrastructure world understands, accurate highway bridge inspections are crucial for ensuring the safety, integrity, and longevity of these vital structures.
There are several steps that can be taken to improve their efficiency and accuracy, including the following:
- Using advanced technology: As we’ve noted already, evolving technology like UAVs, or drones, lasers, and robots can help bridge inspectors access hard-to-reach areas and gather more accurate data.
- Adopting a “risk-based” approach: By prioritizing inspections based on risk factors such as age, location, and structural condition, inspectors can improve efficiency by focusing on areas that need the most attention.
- Standardizing inspection procedures: Developing standardized inspection procedures beyond the requirements put forth by the NBIS can help ensure consistency and accuracy while streamlining the process for all inspections.
- Improving training and certifying of inspectors: Comprehensive training and certification programs for bridge inspectors can improve their skills and knowledge, resulting in more accurate and efficient inspections.
- Emphasizing preventive maintenance: By incorporating preventative maintenance into inspection procedures, inspectors can improve the efficiency and accuracy of their inspections and ensure the long-term health of the bridge.
Analyzing bridge inspection data provides valuable insights into the health of a bridge and helps predict potential issues. By leveraging this data, inspectors can focus their efforts on areas that need the most attention and prioritize repairs or maintenance accordingly.
Highway bridge inspectors currently analyze inspection data by using a range of tests and issuing bridge ratings and scores. The inspection information typically consists of inspection photographs, detailed inspection forms, highway clearances, and engineering sketches of problem areas. The required bridge data is forwarded to the Federal Highway Administration on an annual basis.
Under Bridge Platforms and Efficient Highway Bridge Inspections
For those who carry out bridge inspections and other types of extensive highway bridge work, it is a given that under bridge inspection units are critical to safe and efficient highway bridge inspections, maintenance, and repairs.
Making full use of an under bridge inspection truck not only simplifies the inspection process, but it invariably results in faster and more efficient inspections. In addition, because of the stable and secure working environment provided by under bridge platform vehicles, inspection results are more accurate than they tend to be when not using such vehicles.
Without under bridge platforms, inspectors would be left with less effective methods, such as ladders or rope access, which can be dangerous and time-consuming. Under bridge access vehicles also provide safe access to hard-to-reach areas, which allows inspectors to conduct comprehensive inspections.
In addition, this equipment can significantly reduce the amount of time needed to conduct inspections, which minimizes traffic disruptions and reduces costs associated with bridge inspections, maintenance, and repair.
Simply put, under bridge platforms are essential tools for ensuring the safe and efficient operation of our nation’s highway bridge infrastructure.
For Better Bridge Work and Inspections You Can Count on Under Bridge Platforms
No matter what size of highway bridge you are inspecting, having a broad selection to choose from for your under bridge access needs is critical to efficiently completing your project.
Which is why you can depend on Under Bridge Platforms to provide quality under bridge equipment, serving all of the Western States, including California, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, Montana, and Wyoming.
Our large and expanding inventory of under bridge access platforms includes state-of-the-art bridge access platforms such as the versatile Aspen Aerials UB-60 under bridge inspection unit as well as the far-reaching DFM Bridgemaster-Art-B-4.
In addition, we carry a wide variety of bridge inspection platform vehicles that all feature multiple capabilities. Along with reach and platform size, determining the best choice for your bridge inspection, maintenance, or repair work also depends on both the bridge structure and the terrain underneath.
We are also proud to be the only company in our industry based in California that offers total under bridge access. And by consistently providing high-quality customer service, we have managed to build long-lasting relationships with our esteemed customers.
All of which are qualities that we work hard to keep that way.
So, contact us today and let us help you with your under bridge platform and bridge access needs.