Following a competitive tender process, Highways England appointed SOCOTEC to the nationwide scheme. The deal will see SOCOTEC’s experts undertake on-site investigations, as well as laboratory testing and reporting services on high-performance paints applied to various steel structures located around England’s road networks.
SOCOTEC will carry out testing of coatings applied to steel structures, in particular bridges, to ensure the paints used have been applied correctly and meet specifications required by Highways England. The company has extensive experience testing coatings and is regularly used by paint manufacturers to approve new products.
Highways England will utilise SOCOTEC experts for pre-application coating tests on steel structures, as well as during the investigations on already-applied paints to ensure consistency and durability. Highways England, a Government company, holds the responsibility for maintaining and improving the strategic road network (motorways and major A roads) in England.
Ryan Emery, operations manager, Infrastructure & Energy Services, at SOCOTEC explained: “Our on-site testing services, including cross-cut tests, film thickness, determination of gloss value, surface profile of blast cleaned steel and pull-off strength of coatings, are all UKAS accredited.
“With this certification, Highways England can be reassured that our expertise in coatings testing is of the highest possible standard.”
Speaking about the new agreement, Ali Sharifi, Senior Advisor at Highways England, said: “The coatings we apply to bridges and structures are required to protect our assets for up to 25 years, so our specifications are created with durability and performance in mind. Ensuring they are followed correctly is an important responsibility.
“SOCOTEC’s specialist advice and technical expertise is invaluable, giving us peace of mind that the coatings we apply will meet any of our given specifications.”
For more information on SOCOTEC’s paints and coatings consultancy, please click here.