May 2019 Vol. 74 No. 5


Editor's Log

Renewing a Community of Cooperation

In the late afternoon of Sept. 13, 2018, for two and a half hours, the people in the Merrimack Valley area of Massachusetts (primarily the towns of Lawrence, Andover and North Andover) were rocked by a series of explosions and roughly 80 fires that caused 30,000 people to flee their homes. Miraculously, there was only one fatality and 25 minor injuries.


EPA Announces New WIFIA Funding for Water Infrastructure Projects

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is making funding available to provide an estimated $6 billion in Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loans in 2019. “Through WIFIA, we are addressing several of President Trump’s top priorities, simultaneously: modernizing our nati..

FOSA Urges ‘Smart Infrastructure’ Technology

The Fiber Optic Sensing Association (FOSA) has urged House and Senate Committees to incorporate advanced technologies that will help make the nation’s infrastructure safer, more resilient and longer lasting.

WSSC Accepting Applications for Commissioners’ Engineering Scholarship Program

WSSC, the largest water utility in Maryland, is accepting applications to its annual Commissioners’ Engineering Scholarship Program until June 3.

Customer Satisfaction Declines Across Energy Utilities Sector

Following a slight bump in 2018, residential customer satisfaction in the energy utilities sector has taken an about-face one year later.

PPI Offers Free Course on Selecting, Specifying HDPE for Power, Communications

The Plastics Pipe Institute Inc. (PPI) launched a new Continuing Education Unit (CEU)-style course about design, installation and specification of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) conduit and duct. Selecting & Specifying HDPE Conduit for Power and Communications Applications can be downloaded free from the PPI website.

Washington Watch

Sewer Construction Grants Targeted for Big but Speculative Increase

There seems to be a good chance that Congress will pass a reauthorization of the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF), given strong bi-partisan support for the Water Quality Protection and Job Creation Act of 2019 (H.R. 1497).


Trenching In Tennessee

Cleary Construction is involved in a major project to relocate and replace utility lines in Smyrna, Tenn. Moving the utilities is necessary due to a road widening project to improve traffic flow in this growing community located about 20 miles southeast of Nashville.

Rock, Weather, Tight Deadlines are No Match for Horizon Pipeline

Pipeline construction projects across America have flurried in recent years, with miles of natural gas line being added almost daily. The bulk of new lines is being constructed in the prolific Permian Basin, with midstream energy companies, like Targa Resources Corporation, expanding to support growing demand for natural gas and liquified natural gas (LNG) exports.

How to Select the Right Trench Protection System

How a utility contractor chooses to excavate on a job site can make all the difference in the project outcome. When you consider that 30 to 40 percent of all excavations lack the appropriate protective solutions, it should come as no surprise that projects are often over budget and overdue. When you add the very real risk of injury or death, a lack of proper protection makes no sense at all.

Consumers Energy Modernizes System with Saginaw Trail Pipeline

In Michigan, Consumers Energy is modernizing its natural gas system to improve safety and reliability, and a key element is replacing 78 miles of transmission pipeline that passes through three Michigan counties.

Steering Through Sandy Soils to Upgrade City Sewer System

The economy in Garden City, Kan., is strong with the recent opening of a Dairy Farmers of America plant. Approximately 4 million pounds of milk from regional farmers makes its way to the plant each day, which has led to expansion for many other companies throughout the area. To keep up with the expected growth from the dairy industry and retail stores being constructed nearby, Garden City is upgrading existing utilities to ensure they are prepared to handle current and future needs.

Hidden Beneath the Bed

Undocumented Obstacles Below Railroad Tracks Complicate Ramming Job

DCA Convention Boasts Record Attendance

Active, Productive Year for Association More than 600 Distribution Contractors Association (DCA) members and guests, including a record number of first-time attendees, came from across the U.S. and Canada to the Bahamas for a week of warm, sunny weather at the 2019 DCA Convention. The 58th annual e..

CIGMAT 2019 Addresses Multitude of Infrastructure Issues

The 24th annual, one-day CIGMAT Conference and Exhibition was organized by the Center for Innovative Grouting Materials and Technology (CIGMAT) and the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Houston, and held at the University Hilton, University of Houston on March 1. More than 270 attendees representing owners, consulting engineers, material suppliers, contractors and academia plus 14 speakers participated in the event, titled “Infrastructure, Energy, Geotechnical, Flooding and Sustainable Issues Related to Houston and Other Major Cities.”

PCCA Shines at St. Kitts Convention

Michael Ancell   Enjoying beautiful weather on a fascinating island, more than 340 Power & Communication Contractors Association members, family and friends journeyed to St. Kitts in mid-March for the 74th Annual PCCA Convention. Attendees saluted PCCA’s latest Hall of Fame class, took advantage ..

UCT Grows Bigger in Texas as 25-Year Milestone Nears

The Texas sun had barely set on a successful 2019 Underground Technology International Conference & Exhibition (UCT) when preparations began to for next year’s silver anniversary show. As the first major industry event each year, UCT marks the unofficial start of the spring construction season and ..

Rehab Technology

Waterline Renewal Technologies Acquired by Private Equity Firm

Waterline Renewal Technologies Inc. (WRT), a leading, Rosemont, Ill., provider of engineered products used in the trenchless rehabilitation of wastewater infrastructure for municipal, commercial, industrial and residential applications, was acquired by private equity investment firm Behrman Capital.

Perma-Liner Celebrates Opening of 5th Distribution Warehouse

Perma-Liner Industries LLC, a leading manufacturer and supplier of trenchless pipeline rehabilitation equipment and materials in North America, opened its newest distribution warehouse. The Bow, N.H., facility offers full stocking of cured-in-place-pipe (CIPP) materials and equipment, and direct 24-hour assistance for all certified Perma-Liner installers.

Hoffman Southwest Acquires Tri-State Utilities

Hoffman Southwest (HSW), a portfolio company of ORIX Capital Partners, acquired Chesapeake, VA-based Tri-State Utilities Company.

HammerHead Unveils Precision, Accuracy in New Wet-Out Table

HammerHead Trenchless, a Charles Machine Works Company, took a leap forward in wet-out accuracy with its new WT212-3D. The wet-out table delivers the highly precise and uniform resin saturation required for quality in the latest CIPP curing methods.

Avanti International Celebrates 40-Year Anniversary

Avanti International reached a milestone, celebrating 40 years as an industry leader.

Business News

Berntsen International

Berntsen International Inc. received a U.S. patent for its Ultra-High Frequency (UHF) RFID technology, the centerpiece of the company’s connected infrastructure locating and asset management solutions.


Gradall Industries Inc. released a new video providing an in-depth look at its Vacall family of products. The 12-minute video features an up-close tour of Gradall’s New Philadelphia, Ohio, manufacturing facilities and the state-of-the-art manufacturing processes that produce Vacall sewer cleaning, hydro excavation, industrial vacuum and sweeper models.

NACE International

NACE International, the nonprofit association and leading resource for corrosion expertise and education, launched its newly redesigned website. Based on feedback from frequent users and customers, the new site features enhanced tools and search functions, intuitive navigation to help users quickly locate information, and convenient mobile functionality and responsive design.


Volvo CE has finalized acquisition of Swedish machine adaptation specialist CeDe Group. The deal includes CeDe Group’s intellectual property, operations, other assets and about 45 full-time employees.

Felling Trailers

Felling Trailers Inc., a leader in industrial trailer manufacturing, was awarded a national cooperative contract for heavy equipment trailers through Sourcewell (formerly NJPA). Sourcewell members can now purchase any of Felling’s 240 trailer models at an exceptional value through Sourcewell’s competitively solicited contract.

John Deere

John Deere is rolling out its new construction simulators. The modular update outfits the new John Deere simulators to one of six machine types: backhoe, crawler dozer, excavator, wheel loader, joystick-controlled motor grader and fingertip-control motor grader.

Lockwood, Andrews & Newnam Inc.

Newport Municipal Utility District, which provides water, sanitary sewer and drainage services to 12,000 residents in Harris County, Texas, about 23 miles northeast of the Houston central business district, selected civil engineering firm Lockwood, Andrews & Newnam Inc. (LAN) as its district engineer.

Cleveland Brothers

Cleveland Brothers Equipment Co. Inc., the exclusive Cat dealer of Pennsylvania, northern West Virginia and western Maryland, has expanded its facility locations to provide quality products and services to Washington, Penn.-area contractors, landscapers, excavators and others.

Doosan Bobcat

Doosan Bobcat North America has transitioned its rights to the U.S. sales, marketing and service of the Montabert brand of attachments to Montabert SAS, creating a direct link between the brand’s U.S. distribution network and factory in Lyon, France. The dedicated Montabert U.S. support organization this change creates is the result of an agreement reached jointly by both parties to support Montabert SAS’s desire to get closer to its U.S. customer base.

CASE Celebrates 50 Years of Skid Steer Manufacturing

CASE Construction Equipment celebrated 50 years of skid steer manufacturing with a ceremony on April 3 at its Wichita, Kan., plant. First built in 1969 at the Burlington, Iowa, facility, CASE skid steer production eventually moved to Wichita.

ISCO Industries Acquires HDPE Plant in Montana

ISCO Industries Inc., a Louisville, Ky.-based, high-density polyethylene (HDPE) pipe supplier and fabricator, purchased Plasson USA’s HDPE fabrication plant in Missoula, Mont. The strategic acquisition allows ISCO to further expand in a previously difficult-to-reach area of North America.

Akkerman Earns ISO 9001:2015 Certification

Akkerman Inc., a premier trenchless underground construction systems manufacturer, attained ISO 9001:2015 for its quality management system at its sole manufacturing facility in Brownsdale, Minn.

People News

Granite Inliner

Jason Walborn joined Granite Inliner as director of business development.


Jeff Maier, P.E., is the new infrastructure practice leader on the Water Technology Team at Garver Water Services, a multi-disciplined engineering, planning, architectural and environmental services firm, headquartered in North Little Rock, Ark.


Kim Silvestri, project executive at BOND, the Boston-based manager of many of the Northeast’s most complex construction projects, received the Building Women in Construction (BWIC) Mentor of the Year (2019) Award.

General Equipment Company

Greg Kunderman has joined General Equipment Company, manufacturers of extreme-duty, light construction equipment, as national sales manager.

Volvo CE

Volvo Construction Equipment appointed Scott Young to be vice president uptime and customer support, based in Shippensburg, Penn., effective June 1.

McMillen Jacobs

Mark Dempf, P.E., ENV SP, is a new principal and vice president in the Construction Management practice, New York office, of environmental, engineering, and construction company McMillen Jacobs.


Michael Rutkowski joined GTI as senior vice president, Research & Technology Development, responsible for the breadth of GTI activities including unconventional supply, energy conversion, natural gas delivery, and end use, with offerings at every phase of the technology development cycle.


Patrick Acker, P.E., joined planning, engineering and program management firm Lockwood, Andrews & Newnam, Inc. (LAN) as a senior project manager.

Construction MediCamp

Sam Sebo is the new business development manager at Construction MediCamp, a nationwide medical management group that provides temporary job-site medical clinics and ancillary services to energy and construction-related companies.

New Products


A brand-new high density polyethene product, is now manufactured at Dura-Line’s Gravenhurst, Ontario, plant. PowerGuard, an HDPE conduit, allows for a flexible, expandable network with dedicated, easily identifiable pathways for system upgrades, redundancy and future capacity.

John Deere

A new, low monthly payment lease program is available for customers seeking financial flexibility when acquiring select models of John Deere compact track loaders (317G) and skid steer loaders (314G and 318G).

Felling Trailers

With official implementation of Felling Trailers Inc.’s Documented Real Time Torquing Procedure, 100 percent of the company’s safety-critical attachments, couplers, actuators and lug nuts are torqued and documented in real time.


Doosan now partners to offer the Trimble LOADRITE L3180 SmartScale as an option on Doosan wheel loaders.


Volvo's 20-ton-class EC200E offers strong performance without the added features and cost of a larger excavator.


Schonstedt Instrument Company launched Loki, a multi-frequency locator designed to “sweep” large areas to quickly and easily locate buried assets. It was developed for utilities and construction crews seeking a user-friendly, lower-cost, reliable locator.

New, Right-Sized Vermeer MX300 Mixing System Optimizes Productivity

With a redesigned, slim, rectangular profile tank, the new Vermeer MX300 mixing system is right-sized to help horizontal directional drilling (HDD) contractors optimize productivity and offers customizable mounting configuration options.