Inspection

What We See: Steel Light Pole Corrosion

September 23, 2020

If you own or manage steel pole assets, you know that corrosion is a silent killer of some of your biggest investments. Utility, DOT and retail lighting poles are integral assets that offer safety and security to roadways, plant facilities and retail parking lots. While they can sometimes be an afterthought for O&M professionals that deal with a lengthy list of other mission critical equipment, lighting pole failures represent a significant risk to your business, both from a financial standpoint but also the potential liability if personal injury or property damage occurs.  

This is why it is so important to secure the structural elements of your steel poles and towers. Corrosion, like what is shown in this photo, could have disastrous effects on your asset and subsequently your business. If you wish to avoid these kinds of damages, educate yourself on the most common risk factors and environmental circumstances that lead to this type of deterioration. To ignore these issues would certainly be a gamble.

What Corroded Steel Poles Look Like

As is the case with most self-supporting vertical infrastructure, steel poles and towers experience the most stress near their bases and foundations (simple physics).   

It is for this reason that a secure base is crucial for maintaining the health of your asset. Along with the concrete pier foundation, the welded connection where the pole shaft meets the base flange is the most important structural element of the asset. It is also the most susceptible to corrosion and deterioration. Oftentimes, this process happens from the inside out and goes undetected until it is too late. This is why frequent NDT evaluation and proactive repairs are paramount to maintaining the full lifecycle of these important assets. 

Inspection and Remediation 

The best way to prevent corrosion from causing a pole failure is through regular and routine inspection by a qualified technician. This individual should have training and experience specific to corrosion and coatings.  NACE and ASNT certifications are especially helpful here.  Be sure that your asset management program includes thorough nondestructive testing that can identify interior corrosion and wall thickness loss of the pole shaft. Whatever method of inspection you choose, it is crucial that you behave proactively to catch issues early in their progression.  The effects of corrosion can be easily and cost effectively remediated when caught early. 

Trust the Exo Difference

With services like Exo’s Ex-Tend asset management program, we strategize the best ways to approach lifecycle management and to protect your assets while saving you money. 

Whether it is through lifecycle management, field service and repair, or vendor audits and surveillance, Exo is uniquely prepared to serve your company’s needs and continue providing the asset management services vital to all of your operations.

At Exo, we don’t wait for problems to arise before we take action. Stop problems like the ones in this photo before they occur by calling today to talk with the Exo experts. 

Phone us at 281-259-7000 or contact us online for a free consultation to see how Exo can protect your assets.

Get Started with Exo

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Our team would love to talk to you, so we can learn about your lighting company’s goals and primary areas of concern. Contact us today, and we’ll help you take the first step in creating a comprehensive lighting asset management program. Give us a call at 281-259-7000.
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