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Metegrity comments on modernising pipeline data collection

Published by , Senior Editor
World Pipelines,

Metegrity writes: In a world dependent upon the transportation of fossil fuels, fewer industries have a more pressing need to ensure project success than that of pipeline construction and inspection. With safe, timely, project operations at the forefront of this industry’s needs, why is it still so dependent on dated, inefficient practices?

Metegrity comments on modernising pipeline data collection

Pipeline construction projects and inspections are still largely stuck in the “paper office” era. Site and weld imagery, progress reports, materials, production numbers, and inspection data are not readily accessible when needed – making it difficult to determine what is going on in the field at any given moment. 

With dependency on paper reporting or Microsoft Excel for data entry, inspectors are forced to wait until the end of their shift to manually input all of their reporting. Those reports must then be passed off to administrative staff, and finally on to head offices – each time undergoing aggregate calculations and filtering up the chain of command. The result? Tedious forms. Paper recording for proof of completion. Excessive time lag between the data collection of images, inspections, progress, etc. Inefficiency in excess.

This negatively impacts processes and personnel at all levels of the project. The inspector adds excess hours of work. The project manager doesn’t have immediate information on what’s going on with the project, impairing his ability to react to any problems. Further, the project manager has to deal with each report in isolation, unable to manage all projects under one solution. This impedes the quality, effectiveness and immediacy of any QA/QC procedures, and ultimately effects profitability and expenses for corporate.

Further to the costly financial toll that this creates is the very real risk such a system poses both to the projects, regulatory compliance, and the environment. Without immediate knowledge of a potentially devastating problem with the equipment, preventative measures cannot be readily taken. This increases the risk of shutdowns, failure, environmental hazards and other unforeseen consequences such as expensive pipeline digs for verification to meet regulatory compliance.

The key to solving this industry problem is implementing a tool that offers standardised, real time data collection and modern, efficient reporting. One that transforms inspection data and integrates it into a centralized database purpose built for quality, construction progress, personnel and project performance. Such a tool should:

  • Accept data straight from the field to encrypted servers, making information available to administration at all levels as soon as inspectors press “sync”.
  • Push information for weld procedures to the inspector, eliminating the need for paper handouts
  • Utilise daily reports for the recording of contractor presence, tool and equipment expenditures, and more 
  • Make pictures and GPS locations of welds readily available with no delay
  • Provide streamlined compliance with pipeline regulations for clear audit trails

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