The advents of summer and improvements in the US economy have been blamed for a record number of calls to Indiana's dial-before-you dig-service.
In the ever-growing catalogue of excavation accidents this was a biggie: one dead, six injured and, most spectacularly, one home totally destroyed, 20 left uninhabitable and another 34 damaged, according to press reports
There's a depressingly long list of accidents, many fatal, resulting from contractors puncturing buried gas pipes after failing to properly locate them prior to excavating, but what about a fatal gas explosion during excavations without any gas pipe being ruptured? That’s what happened in New Zealand.
We’ve written often in this column about the dangers associated with excavations and the catastrophes that have often fatally demonstrated those dangers. In most cases they are the result of the excavators, for whatever reason, not having accurate information about the location and nature of underground infrastructure. However, above ground infrastructure that is in plain sight has on more than one occasion proved fatal to those digging up the ground beneath it.
Global recruitment firm Harvey Nash has released the results of its latest annual CIO survey saying it “points to a positive sense of expectation about new opportunities that lie ahead.”
The state government of New South Wales, Australia has tapped the power of Google Earth to make spatial information about the state - maps, land parcels details, survey information, census data and much more readily accessible in a visually appealing way.
In the ever-growing catalogue of excavation accidents this was a biggie: one dead, six injured and, most spectacularly, one home totally destroyed, 20 left uninhabitable and another 34 damaged, according to press reports.
Hunter Water, the water authority in the Hunter Valley region of NSW, has used horizontal directional drilling technology to create a 4.5km tunnel to upgrade its wastewater network. The tunnel is its longest ever using horizontal drilling technology. It could also be close to a world record.
Brigham McCown, a former head of the US federal agency responsible for overseeing the transportation of hazardous materials by air, land, sea, rail and pipelines, wasn't mincing words in this opinion piece in Forbes Magazine, in February.
The Productivity Commission is investigating investment in Australia's public infrastructure. It has been told that open access to government and industry data will be ‘transformational’ for major infrastructure projects.
There’s a whole range of technologies available for locating underground infrastructure and, in Australia, a structure for gaining and demonstrating competence in their use.
In 1985 the US Government’s Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) initiated a Special Emphasis Program covering trenching and excavation. Announcing the move, is that “Because of the continuing incidence of trench/excavation collapses and accompanying loss of life, the agency has determined that an increased OSHA enforcement presence at worksites where such operations are being conducted is warranted.”
Closed circuit television (CCTV) is an extremely useful technology for inspecting the condition of pipelines and conduits - from the inside. Trenchless Australia has produced a handy guide to the technology and its use.
Training.gov.au has released a new version of its training requirements for competency in trenching, the second in six months. Any organisation seeking to get its workers trained to the new competency requirement might struggle: courses specific to it seem to be in short supply.
Perth based Trenchless Utilities claims to have invented a new technology for trenchless installation of pipes and cables that is ideal for use in narrow corridors thanks to its small footprint.
Whatever your interest you’ll find no end of videos on YouTube to feed it. Much of the footage is for amusement only but there’s also plenty of serious stuff on serious topics: and digging trenches is no exception.
If you think a sterile strip is bit of sticking plaster that you slap on your skin after losing an argument with a sharp object, think again. In the UK at least a sterile strip is the land on either side of buried pipelines or other underground infrastructure to which regulations apply that are designed to protect the infrastructure and the rights of its owners and operators.
Mike Sullivan, president at Alberta One-Call, has become the lucky winner of PelicanCorp’s third CGA Conference prize draw, scoring a trip for two to Australia with five nights accommodation.
Dial before you dig services can only be really effective with widespread awareness. While awareness will be high amongst businesses that make their living digging up the earth - for whatever reason, it's a much greater challenge to ensure that every citizen with a plot of earth to their name and the temptation to dig a hole in it, again for whatever reason, is fully aware of the dangers of doing so and the means to avoid them.
For the third year running PelicanCorp is crossing the Pacific to join hundreds of participants at the Common Ground Alliance’s 811 Excavation Safety Conference and Expo, being held at Phoenix Convention Center, Arizona from March 11-13.
We’ve written plenty about the dangers of digging into buried infrastructure but digging can be hazardous even when there is no buried infrastructure: holes in the ground have an unfortunate tendency to collapse, often onto the people who have been digging them, unless proper precautions are taken.