Remote Condition Monitoring

Flood Monitoring System

  • Posted by Adam Cousins

The Flood Monitoring System by L.B. Foster is one of the most innovative remote failure detection solutions available currently, and delivers on unique features and benefits that other flood or water level detection systems cannot match.

Floods, high winds and landslips can destroy railway infrastructure and block lines, so operation teams repair damage and clear debris to ensure trains can continue to run.

Solution Overview

Flood water in particular can pose problems on the railway. Water blocking the lines, as well as debris, silt and mud making its way onto the track, are only part of it. The lasting damage that flood water can cause to infrastructure can lead to ongoing repair work that takes days, weeks or even months.

L.B. Foster’s Flood Monitoring System is significantly different to other solutions currently available delivering accurate depth monitoring and early warning comms.

The detection component of the solution is a flood detector pole. The flood poles contain sophisticated electronics that use capacitance sensor technology to detect if water is present and at what depth.

Affixed to the utility pole are the base station, optional CCTV camera, and an optional solar panel. The base station and camera are powered by solar energy with a 12 volt storage battery. The camera can view the site using these options: 360°, tilt, zoom, and wide-angle. The base station communicates with all the poles using line of sight radio; and communicates with the cloud server and customer interface via the cellular phone network.

Key Features

  • Flood warning of flood risk (water zero sensor) is emailed to nominated group with photos
  • Flood alarm of water level (level sensor) is emailed to nominated group with photos
  • Simple maintenance of the system can be combined with routine track maintenance
  • CCTV camera emails photos of poles/area upon flood warning and flood alarm


  • Greatly reduced risk of a flood-related train derailment
  • Forewarning of a potential flood event
  • Confidently run trains during rain events
  • View flood effects via CCTV to minimise site visits