Earth Control Measures (ECM) are implemented at construction sites to safeguard Singapore's water resources by ensuring that silt is not washed from exposed earth surfaces into the waterways after rain. Since 2016, contractors of sites of 0.2 hectares and above are required to implement closed-circuit televisions (CCTVs) at public drains to monitor treated rainwater discharge to ensure that the discharge is not silty. However, continuous monitoring of CCTV cameras is time-consuming and manpower-intensive, while periodic monitoring of CCTV images also means data collected is not timely.
Through the Technology Adoption Programme (TAP), PUB worked with A*STAR's Institute for Infocomm Research (I2R) to develop Silt Imagery Detection System (SIDS), which uses image analytics technology to detect silt discharge and CCTV downtime (i.e. poor or no images). SIDS extracts and analyses real-time images from CCTVs, and automatically sends alerts to various parties, such as the developer, contractor, CCTV vendor and PUB upon detection of silt discharge or image problems.
The use of image analytics through the SIDS helps the contractors to obtain real-time monitoring for any silty discharge into public drains and enables PUB to work closely with them to take prompt rectification action. With the automated system, workers can be re-deployed to other jobs such as housekeeping work, which can include the maintenance of treatment plants, inspection and cleaning of ECM perimeter areas and drains, as well as cleaning of ECM holding tanks and mosquito vector-control work.