Taking satellite control of Welsh gritters with Masternaut
Leeds, UK, 09 April 2008 – The Welsh Assembly Government (WAG) via its agents The South Wales Trunk Road Agency (SWTRA) and Traffic Wales is implementing cutting-edge web-based satellite telematics from Masternaut Three X. The real-time Masternaut service will track 20 dedicated gritters assigned to keeping the 178 route-km South Wales section of the M4 motorway open and passable during snow and ice conditions.
The gritters are located at specific Assembly Government-owned depots between the Severn Bridge and Pont Abraham section of the M4 and are operated on behalf of SWTRA by Local Authority service providers.
SWTRA issues the gritting instructions to the various depots and Masternaut enables the controllers to verify that these are followed in real time, with vehicle movements visible on the control room display and other browser-enabled devices. In addition the telematics system links to the spreading equipment to record rates and densities of salt dispersed to road surfaces.
"Masternaut will provide archivable reports that will allow us to verify gritting operations have been undertaken along the South Wales section of the M4. The reports will also allow us to follow up and defend any invalid claims made against Agency. In addition, we will be able to follow the gritters in real time and route them during snow events to the motorway sections requiring the most urgent attention. The service will provide us with an extremely powerful and useful management tool," said Richard Jones, Head of The South Wales Trunk Road Agency.
With Masternaut, SWTRA has simplified what would otherwise be complicated administration of winter surface treatments involving several service providers across a wide geographic area.
"The service will reduce administration time and now we can simply issue the order and use the system to track the progress of the gritting vehicles. We are proud of this application of telematics technology and we are currently working with Masternaut Three X to determine areas where we can develop the system further," concluded Richard Jones.
The South Wales Trunk Road Agency (SWTRA) is an Agency working on behalf of the Transport Wales division of the Welsh Assembly Government (WAG). It is responsible for managing, maintaining and improving the strategic road network in South Wales.
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