News


Company flies high with its 'Hi-Sites'

20 September 2006 News

Webb Industries has been awarded a contract by Alcom Matomo to develop 64 'Hi-Sites' for a Tetra Radio Network to be used by the South African Police Services (SAPS). The project involves the identification of the sites and site design and development.

According to Alcom Matomo's Peter Werneyer, one of the main reasons that Webb was awarded the contract is its experience in the development and maintenance of Hi-Sites including the manufacturing and erection of towers. "Webb's significant strength is its ability not only to manufacture and supply towers, but also to supply the majority of the ancillary equipment, for example antennas, connectors, cables, lightning protection and the electrical reticulation."

"Also Webb has been successful in building, managing and maintaining its own Hi-sites, which it has leased out to leading organisations for many years and the experience it has gained will help ensure the project is completed efficiently and effectively," says Werneyer.

So successful has Webb been with its own Hi-Sites that the demand for space on them has forced the company to seriously investigate expansion and growth in this arena. This is according to Webb's Hi-Site divisional manager Francis van Heerden who says: "We have 17 sites throughout Gauteng and with the burgeoning wireless industry, well-managed sites are becoming highly sought after."

Current users of Webb's Hi-Site facilities include many prestigious organisations such as Eskom, Transtel, SAPS, Vodacom, MTN, Cell C, Sentech, Netstar, various security companies and wireless Internet access providers.

Van Heerden says that one of the important reasons for the success of Webb's sites is its location. "Our sites have a particular strategic advantage in the sense that they offer the best possible propagation footprint for the wide frequency spectrum and communication protocols required by our client base." He adds that the sites are underpinned by topographical and geological suitability to ensure the best possible signal.

Another important reason for Webb's Hi-Site success is the attention to detail in the management of each site. "There is a whole lot more to the management of a site than meets the eye," explains Webb MD, Paul Richards. "Maintenance tasks range from checking every nut and bolt on the tower through to servicing the huge generator sets that are on site for back-up power and the physical checking of all of the client's equipment."

Van Heerden concurs, adding that managing a Hi-Site also includes managing the billing system, lease agreements, the electrical accounts from Eskom and local councils and constantly monitoring frequency licensing arrangements.

"Whether managing our own sites or developing dedicated sites for other users, we understand the commitment required to maintain the structural and operating integrity of the towers at all times. Even a single minute of downtime can cause havoc.

"It is a complex and demanding task to maintain a high standard on a Hi-Site, but we have been doing it successfully for a long time now and we have developed an exceptional team with the right expertise and experience," concludes Van Heerden.

For more information contact Paul Richards, Webb Industries, +27 (0)11 444 2299, prichards@webb.co.za



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