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Picture Credit: Westerschelde Tunnel Company

Providing audio for Westerscheldetunnel

This tunnel, situated in the province of Zeeland, serves as the only connection on Dutch territory between the island of Zuid-Beveland and the mainland of Zeeland Flanders. And, at 6.6km, it is the longest tunnel in The Netherlands. As noted by Bart-Jan Coolen, business development and product manager at Elbo Technology, “It is a very important tunnel.”

Elbo was responsible for the delivery of the intercom and emergency phone installations that can be found both at the toll stations on either end of the tunnel and within the tunnel itself.

“We deliver the products to system integrators and installers,” Coolen said. “And these companies receive training at our offices so they can commission the project independently. They send technicians to us on a regular basis. And we provide them with the technical expertise to perform these kinds of installations.”

Communication throughout Westerscheldetunnel

The Westerscheldetunnel runs under the estuary of the same name. And Coolen highlighted the importance of reliable communication in maintaining the tunnel’s infrastructure and protecting its users.

“Emergency phones are placed at intervals throughout the tunnel in the event of accidents and other crises,” he said. “They are also there for when vehicles break down or otherwise become unsafe to drive. There are signs that point people to the nearest emergency phone. And the phone connects them with the operator room.”

Operators can guide anyone in need of assistance and help them resolve situations quickly and safely.

Elbo served as a distributor for the intercoms at the toll stations on either end of the tunnel as well. Two can be found at each station: one at road level for cars and one raised to the level of trucks and busses.

“The upper intercom is so drivers of larger vehicles don’t have to exit in order to call for assistance if no one is in the booth,” Coolen said.

Additional rennovation projects

Regardless of how the debate regarding who pays the tunnel’s tolls turns out, Coolen is confident that the communication systems at the booths and within the tunnel will continue to support the staff and motorists that use it.

According to Coolen, nearly all the Netherlands’ tunnels, bridges and sluices will undergo review, maintenance, and – if needed – renovation between 2020 and 2030.

“We’re monitoring this process to see where we can assist elsewhere,” he said. “We have shown that we can interface with other leading brands. So any solution that is SIP-based means our customers can compile additional solutions regardless of their existing hardware. This enables customers to make smooth transitions into new systems and cut down on costs. We focus extensively on making the burden of changing, upgrading, or replacing systems as light as possible on customers.”

Those who can read Dutch can read more about Elbo on the company’s website. And more information about the Westerscheldetunnel can be found here.

Segment: Transportation, Tunnels
Location: Global

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