Maîtrise Technologique : a valuable know-how
and a real safety culture!

Béatrice Thouvenin, Escota Energy and Tunnels Manager

At Escota (Autoroutes Esterel, Côte d’Azur, Provence, Alpes company, 471 km of network, Vinci group), the DSI (engineering and information systems department) is responsible for the design and implementation of equipment and systems for the route, tolls, tunnels, and information systems. “My first contacts with Maîtrise Technologique, which has been working for longer and still with Escota on the external RAU, date back to 2003-2004, remembers Béatrice Thouvenin, with Escota since 2000, after an experience in aeronautics and training as a electrical engineer. “Since the Mont-Blanc accident in 1999, in fact, new tunnel equipment installations had to be implemented. In addition, every three years, in line with technological and regulatory developments (tunnel modernization program, Disability law) we must, for example, place buttons for the hearing impaired (which allow them to know the status of their communication), lower buttons for people with reduced mobility, etc. »

A smarter, self-healing RAU
Another more recent example of collaboration with Maîtrise Technologique: 2017, the management of the Toulon tunnel (the 2014 tube), which was provided by the State, was transferred to Escota. “We are in the process of integrating the emergency call network into our overall system. The field of intervention is two times three kilometers in the tunnel (one terminal every 200 m) and six kilometers outside (one every 2 km). In addition, inside the tunnel, the system must be more “intelligent” and able to “heal”. Thus, in our operational assistance system, the emergency call arrives not only at the Toulon/La Garde operations centre, but also at the Aubagne checkpoint and the traffic information center at Mandelieu, so that the appeal succeeds, whatever happens, and quickly. »

Listening skills and adaptability
Among the latest tunnel modernization works, let’s talk about the Nice bypass in 2018, and that of La Turbie-frontière (Monaco-Italy) in 2019: “We have modernized the emergency call stations to integrate the elements of the Disability Act. A new technology which makes it possible to improve this “healing” of the network has also been added, as well as the self-test of the terminals, which now avoids the maintainer having to test them one by one, since he is informed by the system. And in Nice, in addition, we have added terminals at the head of the tunnel and outside. It is on this type of site that the sense of listening and the adaptability of Maîtrise Technologique take on their full dimension. »

Real operational know-how
Escota teams rarely work on new infrastructure; also, on the modernization of the existing, the constraints and the requirements to which it is necessary to adapt, are stronger. “And beyond this adaptability and this listening to customers, they are really very reactive, agile and force of proposal, in particular in methodology of works under exploitation, where they have a real technical know-how, sizing the means and the skills to move quickly and well. » Béatrice Thouvenin recognizes, at Maîtrise Technologique, a real culture of safety, that of the teams and that of the motorists: « They do not hesitate to double the number of work workshops in the same beaconing or changeover (change of roadway) , in order to reduce the number of nights (90% of the work is carried out at night), therefore the inconvenience (and safety) to motorists, and to our staff who supervise this work. Finally, their human/machine interface tools are very ergonomic and easy to use. »