Evaluating Pipeline Integrity Through Visual Assessment

Pipe inspection CCTV

CCTV pipe inspection, also known as Closed-Circuit Television pipe inspection, is a technique used to visually assess the condition and integrity of pipelines using specialized cameras and equipment. It involves inserting a CCTV camera into the pipeline to capture real-time video footage of its interior.

CCTV inspection provides accurate and detailed information about the condition of pipelines, detecting blockages, identifying structural defects, and supporting proactive maintenance and rehabilitation efforts. It helps optimize system performance, reduce operation risks, and ensure the integrity of these critical infrastructure systems.

There are several above ground issues or events that can trigger the need for an inspection of underground pipelines:

Visible surface damage: If there is visible damage or disturbance on the surface of the ground above a pipeline, such as sinkholes, cracks, or subsidence, it can indicate a potential issue with the underground pipeline. These signs may suggest a leak, structural failure, or other problems requiring inspection.

Environmental changes: Significant environmental changes, such as changes in water quality, unusual odors, or the presence of contaminated water bodies, can indicate a possible pipeline issue. An inspection may be necessary to identify the source of the problem and assess the condition of the pipeline.

Construction or excavation activities: Construction work or excavation near a pipeline can pose a risk of damage or interference. Before, during and after such activities, an inspection may be carried out to ensure the pipeline’s integrity and identify any potential damage or weaknesses.

Leak detection: The detection of leaks, either through visual observation or the use of leak detection equipment, can trigger an inspection to locate the source of the leak and assess the overall condition of the pipeline.

Regulatory requirements: Certain regulations or industry standards may mandate periodic inspections of pipelines, regardless of any specific aboveground issues. Compliance with these regulations ensures the safety and integrity of the pipeline network.

Routine maintenance and monitoring: Scheduled routine maintenance programs often include periodic inspection as part of proactive maintenance strategies. These inspections help identify any emerging issues before they escalate into major problems.

Systems performance anomalies: Unusual system performance, such as unexpected pressure drops, flow rate changes, or frequent blockages, may prompt an inspection to investigate the cause and assess the condition of the pipeline.

CCTV pipe inspection offers numerous benefits including enhanced safety, time savings, comprehensive assessments, and efficient data management. These advantages make it a valuable tool for ensuring the integrity and optimal performance of pipelines in various industries such as water and wastewater management, oil and gas, and infrastructure development. Here are some key advantages of using CCTV for pipe inspection:

Visual assessment: The real-time video footage allows operators to observe and document the state of the pipes. The real-time video footage allows operators to observe and document the state of the pipes, identifying defects, damages, blockages, corrosion, root intrusion, and other issues that may compromise the pipeline’s integrity.

Non-destructive methods: CCTV inspections are non-destructive, meaning they don’t require excavation or dismantling of the pipeline to assess its condition. This minimizes disruption, reduces costs, and eliminates the need for extensive manual inspections or physical sampling.

Cost-effective: CCTV inspections require minimal equipment and personnel, reducing labor costs and time required for inspection. By identifying specific problem areas, targeted repairs or maintenance activities can be planned, optimizing resources, and minimizing unnecessary expenditures.

Early detection of issues: Identifying defects and damages in their early stages, preventive maintenance measures can be taken to address the problems before they worsen. This helps prevent major failures, reduce emergency repairs, and extend the lifespan of the pipeline.

During CCTV inspections various issues can be identified. The specific finds will depend on the type of pipeline being inspected (such as water, sewer, or stormwater), its condition, and the purpose of the inspection. Here are some common findings that can be identified during CCTV inspections:

Structural defects: CCTV inspections can identify structural defects within pipelines, such as cracks, factures, joint displacement, misalignment, or collapse. These defects can be caused by aging, corrosion, ground movement, or external factors.

Blockage and obstruction: CCTV inspections can detect blockages and obstructions within the pipeline, such as debris, sediment buildup, tree roots, grease, or foreign objects. These blockages can restrict or impede the flow of water or sewage and lead to systems backups of overflows.

Corrosion and deterioration: CCTV inspections can reveal signs of corrosion, deterioration, or wear on the pipeline’s walls. This includes identifying rust, pitting, scaling, or loss of material thickness, which can compromise the structural integrity of the pipeline.

Leaks and infiltration: CCTV inspections can help identify leaks or infiltration points with the pipeline. This includes detecting water seepage, joint gaps, or cracks that allow water or sewage to escape or external water to enter the system.

Pipe material and condition: CCTV inspections can determine the material type of the pipeline such as concrete, metal, clay, or plastic. It can also assess the overall condition of the pipe, including assessing the presence of joint seals, pipe sagging, or signs of degradation.

Connection issues: CCTV inspection can identify problems with pipeline connections, such as faulty or misaligned joints, offset pipes, or dislodged couplings.

Structural abnormalities: CCTV inspections can uncover structural abnormalities with the pipeline system, such as bends, elbows, or changes in pipe diameter. These abnormalities can impact flow rates, increase turbulence, or cause potential blockages.

Root intrusion: In the case of sewer systems, CCTV inspections can identify root intrusions, where tree roots penetrate and grow with the pipeline, causing blockages and structural damage.

It’s important to note that findings from CCTV inspections are typically documented using standardized defect coding systems, such as the Pipeline Assessment and Certification Program (PACP) or National Association of Sewer Service Companies (NASSCO) standards. This coding system allows for consistent reporting and assessment of the identified issues.

Contact us to learn more about how our highly trained professionals can assist you in the maintenance and inspection of your stormwater and sanitary pipelines.