After the CCTV inspection on the pipe, lateral or manhole is completed, what happens to the video and collected condition information? Previously it used to sit in boxes or shelves in a closet somewhere but now everyone realizes that data is too valuable, to too many people, not to share it between departments. With the NASSCO coding standard it is easy to share that data with other software programs. With a published list of codes and a data dictionary outlining field requirements, the NASSCO transfer file can be easily imported into a variety of other software programs. Most have added a standard import process for bringing the survey data into their management software so that costs can be easily tracked and additional work orders created for repair work or other scheduled maintenance.
Many of the data collection software vendors have incorporated an interface with GIS to access survey detail from the GIS program by the engineering staff in the office. The user can select the pipe on the map and open the video for playback. Some interfaces include the survey history of the pipe allowing the user to track the conditions and their changes over time. Usually the collection database can be “searched” and pipes highlighted in the GIS program that contain specific conditions or pipe grades making it much easier to plan additional work like repairs or jetting.
The data is also used by the GIS departments to verify that the map data is correct. Many maps have been created from old, historic mapping data and may not relate to actual in ground conditions. GPS coordinates can be collected in the field during an inspection and saved in the NASSCO inspection format. Other asset details like location, diameter, material, lining, and pipe lengths are also collected. This information can be exported so the GIS department can update their maps. Buried manholes that are found are added to the map creating new assets, both manhole and pipes.
Many engineering firms have built analysis modules to search these databases and make recommendations based on built-in risk assessments. It is not enough to know there is a fracture or a hole in the pipe, it is also important to consider the risk of failure of that particular pipe. Factors like public impact, environmental impact, age, and cost of repair versus replacement are all considered and built into their analysis.
When NASSCO introduced the PACP® standard in 2002, training the inspector to understand the different conditions was a major component of the program. Since then NASSCO established a re-certification program that each inspector will take every three years to bring them up to date on the new codes added for different survey types like grouting and storm inspections, as well how to handle new technology like scanning cameras and laser inspections.