Isle of Man internal culvert inspections

Client: Department of Infrastructure and Manx Utilities                      Location: Isle of Man

Our confined space entry team were tasked with carrying out internal culvert inspections according to the T98 standard in Douglas, Laxey, Foxdales and Ramsey.


The Department of Infrastructure and Manx Utilities are responsible for the maintenance and inspections of all the watercourse structures on the Isle of Man. They had four culverts that required inspecting, two of which we had inspected before in Laxey and Foxdales. The other two culverts in Ramsey and Douglas hadn’t been inspected for some time and little was known about them. The culvert in Douglas was challenging due it its location, under the power station that supplies the island with electricity. The culvert in Ramsey also posed its own challenges, as it discharges into the Sulby river at the estuary to the Irish Sea. This meant it could only be accessed at low tide to ensure there was limited waterflow through the culvert and that the inspection team didn’t get trapped in the culvert by the tide.


Our confined space inspection team sailed to the Isle of Man in January to complete the inspections. The team received site-specific training which allowed the team to work within the power station boundary. Upon arrival, the team also had to sit a site induction and sign on to a permit to work by the power station’s chief engineer. Following the induction and permit to work, the team began with the inspection. The culvert under the power station is comprised of two concrete box culverts that should have been approximately 1.5m high. However, a large amount of silt and gravel was resting on the bed giving only 900mm clearance in the lowest section. The team traversed the culvert keeping communications with the ‘Top Person’ for safety. During the inspection, they collected structure dimensions, recoded changes in the structural construction and shape, and detailed descriptions of defects found. They also captured photographs and video footage for the client to view to gain a better understanding of the condition of the culverts.

Our GISMap application was used on mobile phones to log key data and geo-reference photographs.


The team reported on their findings including recommendations to improve the capacity of the culvert and limit gravel and sediment build-up. The swift reporting on each of the four culvert inspections ensured the client had all the information required to begin remedial works for the highest priority defects. This helped the client with prioritising works and ensuring the work carried out was cost-effective and efficient.

Want to know more?

Contact Craig Lucas for more information about this project. Visit our webpage for more details about our asset inspection management services: Asset Management | JBA Consulting

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