Watch your step on footway assessments, Gaist warns


A technology company has warned of the need for cost-effective and safe means of assessing the condition of footways as the newest edition of the Specification for the Reinstatement of Openings in Highways (SROH) is set to bring in new requirements.

The fourth edition of SROH, released earlier this year, officially replaces the 2010 third edition as statutory guidance on 10 May 2021. Until that time companies may either continue to use the third edition specifications or implement fourth edition specifications, provided agreement is given from the relevant local highway authority

Gaist said detailed and accurate information on the condition of the entire length of the footway in question is now essential.

It said project undertakers and local authorities should adopt solutions that provide data in compliance with the new industry standards and are supported by imagery that can be shared and reviewed by all stakeholders remotely, in a consistent and qualitative way.


Head of business development Ian Job said: ‘Following the recent announcement of these industry requirements, stakeholders throughout the project process need to be reconsidering the methods that they use to obtain and share this information.’

‘By adopting a solution that uses a combination of Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and human inspection, like those provided by Gaist, stakeholders have the capability to know the condition of the existing surface in greater detail, without breaking the bank.’

Mr Job added that with condition analysis and imagery for the entire length of the relevant section of footway, rather than sample testing, organisations can ensure that there are no gaps and missing data that could impact on the success of projects. It also negates the need for traditional walked surveys, reducing the risk of health and safety incidents for surveyors, authorities and the general public.

He said a detailed overview of the working environment and existing infrastructure is vital to the accurate planning, design and budgeting of installation, maintenance and upgrade projects on the footway network.

‘Street works from telecoms and utilities companies are commonplace on the UK's footway networks, but without careful assessment of the environment it is impossible to safely and accurately manage and measure the quality of work carried out by contractors - until now’

‘With our cost-effective and industry standard compliant solution, local authorities are already gaining detailed and accurate insights into the condition of entire lengths of footways, without having to leave the office or increase their costs,’ Mr Job said.

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