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Highways England CHARM implementation

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Industry collaboration supports Highways England CHARM implementation

Clearview Intelligence

A collaboration between members of the supply chain, including SMEs has achieved success in allowing the continued operation of the Motorway Incident Detection and Automatic Signalling (MIDAS) Queue Protection during the implementation of Highways England’s CHARM programme.

For the role-out to be successful, additional MIDAS detector sites are required in locations where there is a boundary between the legacy control system HATMS (Highways Agency Traffic Management System) and this new system, to ensure data remains available across boundaries to both Highway England areas.

Working on the Area 2 and 3 boundary (M4, South West), Crown, Dynniq and Clearview Intelligence worked together to deploy Clearview’s M100 Magnetometer Sensors where the existing detectors were looped based. The addition of the Magnetometer (in the centre of the loop) enables the information from the original loops to be replicated so both Areas can see the MIDAS Queue Protection data. As there is no requirement to slot cut when installing M100 Sensors, installation time is significantly improved (each sensor installed within 10-15 minutes) and, as sensors are installed in the centre of each lane, they can be installed one lane at a time, minimising the number of road closures or disruption to road users.

CHARM is part way through its rollout and is a project of strategic importance to Highways England.

Clearview’s M100 sensor is installed in the centre of each lane, which places it out of the running tracks of vehicles. This creates much less damage to the integrity of the road surface, and the entire installation process can be completed significantly quicker than the installation of loops. As each sensor is installed independently, this means the process can be carried out on a lane-by-lane basis and can result in much less cost in traffic management requirements and reduces the need for full carriageway closures.

Simon Waterfall, Client Relationship Manager at Clearview Intelligence said: “By utilising the M100 magnetometers, which detect vehicle speed and size, to feed into the MIDAS system, it helps support and build the confidence in the data behind the detection system. Working with Highways England’s Safety, Engineering and Standards team, the M100 has not only been successfully used in this project but Clearview sees this as a complementary system to other detection methods being deployed on the network.”

Simon Skelton, Senior Project Manager, Information & Technology at Highways England said: “Clearview were subcontracted on my project to supply and implement their magnetometers as part of a national roll out of Control Centre systems. Timescales were extremely tight, and they responded rapidly, deploying knowledgeable people who pragmatically overcame many challenges. I was thoroughly impressed with the way they proactively collaborated with me and other sub-contractors This all helped cut project delivery timeframes by 50%.”

Crown Highways, working with Clearview and Dynniq, the principal contractor on this project, were responsible for installing the magnetometers, infrastructure columns, ducting and MIDAS outstations. The company used specialised equipment such as a towable coring rig, to ensure that the job could be done to on time and to the highest of standards. This also enabled the project to be completed in 12 days instead of the three weeks originally projected.

Crown Highways MD Mike Dale added: “Delivering ahead of schedule is something to be proud of, and something we pride ourselves on. Our team worked diligently and efficiently in order to get this project complete and achieve the deliverables of both of our clients.”

Crown and Clearview are working in other areas of Highways England’s network to deliver the same solution at other boundary locations.

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