A trial of new and innovative Remote Technical Support (RTS) technology is delivering significant safety and efficiency benefits for Ventia's Defence Fuels team, which operates in highly remote regions of Western Australia. 

In collaboration with the Australian Defence Force (ADF), Ventia commenced the three-month pilot in late 2020, with the aim of creating an even safer, more resilient, and agile Defence Fuel Network.

The pilot program, which has been rolled out on several ADF bases throughout Western Australia, provides site-based Maintenance and Operations field workers with remote, real-time assistance and support from the national Fuel Services team as well as industry and Defence experts, regardless of location.

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According to Defence Fuels Regional Operations manager Eric Collins, while still in the early stages, the new system is already delivering numerous important safety and cost benefits.

Safety is Ventia's primary, unwavering focus. We're also known for our reliability - operating around the clock to get the job done, safely, sustainably and cost-effectively.

"The RTS pilot program is ensuring we continue to do this, even in the most remote of locations. We're already seeing critical benefits from this program, including reduced operational downtime and costly site travel, improved safety outcomes, enhanced support for remote operations and maintenance, faster turnaround on reactive works through remote scoping, and even the ability to conduct real-time remote inspections, audits and site walks," Eric said.


To date, several functions of the RTS system have been tested through actual operations and simulated test cases:

  • Taking photos and videos of site conditions: for inspection by base security officers, or an automated workflow can be set up to send directly to security officers for review
  • Viewing documents such as site drawings while walking the site: uploading drawings to the RTS unit or via screen share on Microsoft Teams
  • Calling in remote support to assist with fault diagnostics: Perth and Eastern States-based management and engineers were called in to support field teams to successfully diagnose and investigate a recent fault
  • Sharing documents such as Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) with remote experts to clarify operational and maintenance procedures: site teams were supported by remote engineers while working through a fault
  • Virtual site inspections with multiple remote experts to provide quality documentation and inspection of completed works: on-site maintenance team engaged remote Defence Fuel Installation (DFI) Operations staff for site inspections pre and post maintenance works
  • Engineering and Project Support: Eastern states-based design engineers were able to remotely assist technicians during commissioning of several recent projects.

The next stage of this program is to further test system capability, with the intention of the program being officially rolled out nationally in the future. 

Ventia will continue to work with our ADF partners to develop this technology and continue to implement innovative solutions to the complexities faced by our people and our clients operating and maintaining critical infrastructure in remote locations across Australia.

Man and woman pictured in PPE on site