Network Rail, Railway power cameras to reduce delays and costs

Spotting a defect on an overhead rail wire upto 25ft above your head can be tricky even to the expert eye but new camera technology, which has been rolled out to rail teams across Britain, will mean more efficient and more accurate maintenance, fewer delays to passenger and freight services and save millions of pounds in delay payments.

Following a successful trial, Network Rail has supplied 30 cameras to maintenance delivery units on electrified routes across the country. A huge benefit is that engineers can safely operate the cameras without turning off the power and closing the line – a huge time saver.

When out on routine track patrols, engineers can attach the camera to the overhead wire and it is then held steady by two small stabilising arms on insulated poles. The camera can tilt so that images and video of the top and side of the wire can also be seen. High resolution images are instantly captured and streamed to a portable laptop. Engineers can view this for instant review of the condition of the wire and equipment components or analyse the footage back in the delivery unit. A schedule for repair of any defects can then be put in place.


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