Building on the system’s extraordinary international success, DYNAMIC INFRASTRUCTURE and if3 have secured the first Australian contract for the AI enabled bridge asset management system, with Horsham Rural City Council in Victoria now using the Dynamic Infrastructure package for its bridge assets.
Situated in Victoria’s Wimmera region and centred around the city of Horsham some 300 kilometres north-west of Melbourne, the Horsham Rural City Council area covers 4,267 square kilometres and is home to a population of 19,800 – some 75% of which live in the urban area of Horsham. Home to the Wimmera Intermodal Freight Hub (the central location for container grain handling and grain processors across one of the world’s largest grain, pulse and oilseed growing regions) Horsham is a comfortable three and a half hour drive from Melbourne and four and a half hours from Adelaide on the Western Highway – the main road transport route between the two capitals. The municipality also lies at the hub of the State and National Highway system, providing key road transport routes to Mildura, Portland, Mount Gambier and Bendigo.
As well as providing access for residents and visitors, the city’s road and bridge network provides critical transport and freight linkages for agriculture and other industries. As such, infrastructure asset management and maintenance has always been a key priority for council.
Krishna Shrestha, Manager Strategic Asset Management with Horsham Rural City Council commented: “We have over 60 bridges – including 28 major bridges – across the municipality. Ensuring that these bridge assets are able to keep up with the demands of increasing traffic numbers and larger vehicle loads is critical to the continued future growth and prosperity of the region.”
“With that in mind, rather than following the more traditional ‘reactive’ asset management and maintenance approach, our CEO wanted us to focus on developing a ‘proactive’ program which addresses bridge maintenance, remediation and upgrades before major issues arise.”
“As well as helping to ensure that all of our bridge assets are able to remain in service, this change in approach allows us to better develop long-term strategies for capital expenditure – whether it’s for maintenance, major remedial works or upgrades,” Mr Shrestha said.
Needless to say, having accurate and up-to-date condition data for the bridge assets is a critical factor in the success of any asset management and maintenance program. After all, it is all but impossible to budget or plan a path for the future, without accurate information about the current condition of the assets.
The DYNAMIC INFRASTRUCTURE system not only enabled the Horsham Rural City Council team to build a full ‘health record’ for each of the municipality’s bridge assets, it also provided them with a timeline that put all of the historic bridge inspection data into a directly relatable context, thereby highlighting any damage or faults that were escalating with age.
“We implemented the Dynamic Infrastructure package early 2021, and even though we’ve only been using it for a relatively short time, everyone is extremely impressed with its performance and capabilities,” Krishna Shrestha said.
“The set-up process was extremely easy. We simply provided the Dynamic Infrastructure team with all of the historic data and reports that we have for each of our bridge assets, and they collated these into a full historic record for each bridge.”
“The AI system inspected all of the imagery and identified, classified and rated any damage or faults, and then created a record showing the type of fault or damage, the exact location on the bridge and the date of the image. It then produced a timeline for each bridge, which enables us to look at an individual fault across all of the inspections to see when it first appeared, whether or not it’s getting progressively worse, or if it’s been repaired,” he said.
“It really is a remarkable system,” Mr Shrestha added. “It has already made a massive difference to our bridge asset management and maintenance operations.”
“Not only has it streamlined and simplified all aspects of our bridge asset operations – from inspection, reporting and data management through to budgeting, planning and maintenance delivery – it is also playing a major role in helping us to develop, manage and deliver our 10-year bridge asset works program.”