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Stormwater inspections made easier with digital data collection technology

June 1, 2023

While vital for environmental health, conducting stormwater inspections can nonetheless be a slow, inefficient, and costly process.

With a staggering 3.5 million miles of storm sewers and 270 million storm drains in the U.S., better tools are needed to streamline the stormwater inspection process, especially when so many qualified storm events require a rapid response. 

To be most effective, inspectors need to collect and share reliable and accurate information so that their clients, managers, or stakeholders can make the data-driven decisions that avoid potentially serious consequences, including environmental damage, public health disasters, and financial penalties.

To meet these challenges, field inspection management software is poised to transform the stormwater inspection process with its robust slate of digital features that elevate efficiency, accuracy, and regulatory compliance to continually save you time, money, and resources.

In this blog post, we’ll look at the major advantages of using field inspection management software to conduct stormwater inspections and how it streamlines the process to become more productive, affordable, and reliable.

Unleashing the precision of GIS 

Leveraging the precision of geographic information system (GIS) data, field inspection management software can accurately identify and map locations that typically lack a conventional address and were often overlooked, such as storm grates or sewers. 

GIS data introduces a higher level of consistency and reliability to the inspection process, ensuring teams always inspect the correct location, even in the most challenging environments. And having exact location data improves response times to follow-up maintenance or emerging hazards identified during the inspections.

Cloud-based, field inspection management software provides a robust, digital trail of inspection activities that can be easily shared with clients or regulatory bodies as proof of your organization’s adherence to environmental standards, mitigating the risk of non-compliance and associated penalties.

Closeup of storm drain - Stormwater inspections made easier with digital data collection technology

Leveraging proximity for swift inspections

Some inspections, particularly those associated with qualified storm events, require a rapid response – typically within the first 30 minutes. 

Field inspection management software can quickly mobilize inspection personnel based on proximity to the inspection site. Rapid deployment reduces response times to urgent inspections and facilitates the quick collection of essential data that might otherwise be lost as the storm event progresses.

As the central information and task execution hub, field inspection management software also allows multiple inspectors to work in unison despite any varying locations, seamlessly aligning them on SOPs, ensuring all collected data adheres to the same standards, and boosting the overall quality and reliability of the inspection process.

Consolidating tasks for optimal efficiency

Field inspection management software stands out for its ability to optimize inspections by consolidating multiple tasks during a single visit, ensuring that each inspection is as productive and impactful as possible.

For example, if your team is onsite for a visual inspection, field inspection management software can guide them to perform additional activities, such as pH analysis or a sample collection. 

Consolidating tasks significantly minimizes the need for return visits, leading to substantial savings in time, cost, and resources. And by guiding inspectors through these supplementary tasks, increasing the depth and breadth of collected data, field inspection management software provides a more thorough understanding of the stormwater system’s status.

Better guidance with digital checklists and SOPs

Onboarding new employees or contractors to do stormwater inspections can be time-consuming and costly, but field data inspection management software provides newcomers mobile access to easy-to-follow digital checklists and SOPs to help guide them through the inspection process, guidance that can be updated in real-time. 

These resources are valuable tools in ensuring inspection uniformity across the team, regardless of individual experience levels. By following the detailed checklists and SOPs, new inspectors can perform their duties with confidence and precision, minimizing errors and enhancing the overall quality of their work. 

And by speeding up the learning curve for new hires, inspection platforms reduce the time and costs associated with training and accelerate their integration into your operational workflows.

Streamlining data sharing and reporting

Field inspection management software makes sharing and reporting inspection data convenient and easy. With just a few clicks, inspectors can easily share data with regulators, stakeholders, clients, or other contractors in various formats. This breaks down silos and promotes transparency, which is particularly important when dealing with environmental stewardship and regulatory compliance, often under a time crunch.

Inspection software also supports the rapid creation of comprehensive PDF reports, allowing you to produce and distribute detailed findings within minutes. This streamlines communication and supports timely decision-making, crucial for effective management and rapid response to any stormwater issues or hazards.

Stormwater inspections made easier with digital data collection technology

Paving the way for streamlined compliance

Field inspection management software goes beyond efficient data management by streamlining compliance with environmental regulations. With easy-to-follow task assignment, reliable data collection and record-keeping, and real-time tracking of ongoing compliance activities, staying on top of regulatory responsibilities is convenient, efficient, and effective. 

And with all the relevant inspection data at your fingertips, you can quickly identify and share potential non-compliance issues with decision-makers, who can dispatch remediation teams and significantly reduce non-compliance risks. 

Facilitating seamless permit renewals and applications

Dealing with permit renewals or applications is often a thankless task, but field inspection management software simplifies the process by acting as a central repository for all your necessary inspection data, making it readily accessible when needed.

When it’s time to renew a permit or apply for a new one, you have all the required information at your disposal. Instead of starting from scratch and hunting for necessary documents each time, all your historical and current data is stored securely in one place, streamlining the process, and saving time.

A new era for stormwater inspections

Fulcrum’s leading field inspection management platform is an all-in-one super tool that transforms stormwater inspections, boosting their accuracy, speed, and efficiency, packing multiple tasks into one visit, and side-stepping operational snags with digital checklists and SOPs. 

Seamless data collection and sharing keep clients and stakeholders updated, ensures consistent compliance, and makes permit renewals easier than ever, all while stepping up to safeguard our environment and public health.

A smart, sustainable solution for a massive challenge, field inspection management software is the future of stormwater inspections, one that is efficient, effective, and environmentally friendly. 


Ready to ease compliance issues, optimize each visit to a stormwater inspection site, and streamline field operations? Sign up for a free demo of Fulcrum and we’ll show you how it’s done!