ECO BIKE SURVEYS
The Eco Bike is a newly developed environmentally friendly surveying vehicle. It can provide: routable networks, mapping of routes and assets, recording and evaluation of road signs and sign posts, guidance concepts, surveys using ATV oder PEDELEC (electric bike): (panoramic-) images, condition survey, analysis of driving comfort and the evaluation of cycling infrastructure (e.g. for touristic development).
Within Ginger Lehmann one of our key business principles is that we will be proactive in managing our responsibilities to the environment. We recognise that we each have a personal and collective responsibility to use resources efficiently and give consideration to the impact of our products and operations on the environment, and to take steps to address these.
We recognise that our day-to-day operations have the potential to damage the environment. To keep our impact to a minimum we must manage our resources efficiently and minimise waste. We should also take responsibility for cutting the use of energy, water and other materials and try to recycle where possible.
The Eco Bike was created with this in mind, to combat our impact on the environment and to push the boundaries of innovation within a particularly hard sector to reduce environmental impact. Within highway surveying a main tool we use are emission vehicles to quickly cover a large surveying area. Although we do walked surveying which is more environmentally friendly, we cannot cover a large area quickly. The Eco Bike meet’s in the middle of a quick video survey while producing zero emissions.
Not only does the Eco Bike open up innovative possibilities for the future of highway surveying it can also be an excellent way to provide a way to maintain cycle lanes and tracks by collection not only condition data but ride comfort as well using an accelerometer to measure vertical movements. This will in effect allow cycle lanes and tracks to be more comfortable, letting councils make effective decisions to maintain the quality and usability of these routes. And in turn will encourage more and longer use of more sustainable modes of transport by the public.
With more investment into cycle routes it is of upmost importance that they are of usable quality and are kept to a usable standard. Otherwise people will opt back to other modes of transport, potentially more emission based transport. Our Eco Bike not only allows us to collect video and data on this to allow for informed decisions. But it can also be used to map out and collect data for potential cycling infrastructure.
This can be taken even further. For city centres hire bike schemes are widely available and used. What the Eco Bike can do is collect data on the docking stations and allow for informed decisions on the maintenance, mapping and potential new stations. This again all adds to better maintained and better quality of zero emission modes of transport for the public. The more comfortable, easy and convenient, the more likely the public will use this more environmentally friendly modes of transport.
Another benefit internally is that it allows another form of surveying which improves the health of our surveyors. Already our walked surveyors speak of the benefits to their health and well being having active outdoors job, and this adds another element and way to get our team into an active outside role.
Reducing the equipment needed for surveying and video capture while not compromising on quality led to some strategic development on the use of cameras and the positioning. It was eventually decided to create a metal “arm” to hold the equipment securely in place to capture the best view of the pathway. Also the decision of using a tricycle as oppose to a bicycle allowed for our surveyors to cycle longer distances to collect the data with less fatigue. It also allowed the equipment to be closer to the ground which allowed for a better imagery of the pathways.
We track and recorded emissions released by our van’s and when a client books a Eco Bike survey in place of one of our vans we will be able to see the volume of emissions which has been saved.
In future we would love to see more of our clients using the Eco Bike services. Every maintenance decision for cycle lanes based of the data we collect contributes to the experience of the cyclists who use them and to the maintenance of the track. We would like to see our Eco Bike surveys being used in place of some of our vehicle surveys, especially in residential areas. Which will directly take away emissions from some work.