Western Power, the network operator responsible for electricity supply in most of south western WA, needed to replace or reinforce many of its rural wooden electricity poles which were near the end of their serviceable life. EnergySafety, an industry-funded WA government division in the Department of Commerce, is Western Australia’s electrical safety regulator monitoring that programme of up-grading.
EnergySafety contracted Data Analysis Australia to design a sampling scheme to check the veracity of Western Power’s pole database records by physically inspecting a sample of wooden poles. The aim was to determine that the records accurately reflected what was “on the ground”, not to detect unsafe poles.
The Data Analysis Australia Approach
The use of maps was an important adjunct to the usual statistical principles of sampling and consideration of practicalities, due to the spatial element of the sampling exercise.