I am pleased to introduce this latest edition of the RSTA E-news, during a year that is once again seeing significant milestones for our association. As you will see later in this edition, the organisation is going from strength to strength, an indication we believe, of the ever-growing emphasis on public asset maintenance in the current economic climate. A situation that is more likely to last for the medium and long term rather than for just the immediate future.
Since our RSTA Annual Conference earlier this year we have continued to see the effects of austerity measures on capital budgets and unfortunately in some cases on our client organisations and other bodies within the industry. This of course makes it increasingly difficult to bring about change and to deliver the increasing maintenance services required by the deteriorating asset. In addition our engineers and their colleagues in local government are now further tasked with delivering asset valuation and long-term asset plans to meet the requirements of Whole of Government Accounts and the associated assessment standards that feed into the reporting.
That said, this valuation and asset planning process will help our industry in the long term, clearly illustrating to central government, firstly the quality of asset information and inventory held by client organisations and secondly the engineering processes and principles that can be directed at getting the most out of our assets, and if funding allows, the slowing down of the deterioration of the UK network through well developed investment planning.
In the RSTA we have worked closely with our colleagues in ADEPT during the last year to assist in this process. Understanding the service lives and characteristics of our surface treatment materials and processes in critically important to good asset management. In order for Depreciated Replacement Cost (DRC) to be assessed and reported, our client engineers need to understand from the industry how materials perform, where they should be best deployed to get maximum whole life value, and what particular attributes they bring to the network. This is the work that the RSTA and ADEPT have collaborated on recently, resulting in the publication of the Surface Treatments Service Lives document.
Having celebrated the 70th Anniversary of our association this year, the RSTA sees the coming years as a fantastic opportunity to further develop our services with client engineers and colleagues focussed on high value highway maintenance, deployed at the most effective time to firstly arrest the network deterioration and then begin to reduce the maintenance backlog over the coming years, delivering innovative materials and processes, supported by our technical teams and specified by our clients with engineering understanding and confidence.
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