Drones Give Inspectors a Closer Look at Bridges

Bridge

Michael Baker International inspectors are using power seats and drones to assess bridge conditions.

January 2, 2019
Aileen Cho - Engineering News-Record

Ted Zoli, national chief bridge engineer with HNTB, compares bridge inspections to taking his kids to the doctor. “Every few years you take another set of pictures of the bridge, and ultimately you can pattern it. You pay attention in a deeper way to responses, and have a record.” But like parents who don’t want to send kids to the doctor at the first sign of a sniffle, once managers understand the characteristics of a bridge and its behavior, they don’t need to do constant in-depth reinspections. They are constantly looking for ways to make better decisions with the data they already have. “We spend a lot of money inspecting bridges,” says Zoli. “The question becomes whether there is a more technologically efficient way to do it.”

ENR may be contacted at ENR.com@bnpmedia.com



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