Damage Prevention & Safety

Search underway for Main Pass pipeline leak after 1.1 million gallons of oil spill in Gulf of Mexico

As much as 1.1 million gallons of oil may have been discharged into the Gulf of Mexico from a pipeline system off Louisiana’s southeast coast, the U.S. Coast Guard said Tuesday. The affected pipeline has been shut down but authorities are still trying to determine the exact location and cause of the leak.

American Augers machine to aid rescue effort for Indian workers trapped in collapsed tunnel

A new drilling machine arrived at the accident site in Uttarakhand state on Saturday to replace one that was damaged while breaking through the rocks and debris. They had been using the drill to create a space to insert wide pipes through which the trapped workers could crawl to their freedom.

Federal authorities investigate underwater oil pipeline leak off the coast of Louisiana

Federal authorities said Saturday that they’re investigating a leak from an underwater oil pipeline off the coast of Louisiana.

New drill bores deeper into tunnel rubble in India to create an escape pipe for 40 trapped workers

Rescuers drilled deeper into the rubble of a collapsed road tunnel in northern India on Friday to fix wide pipes for 40 workers trapped underground for a sixth day to crawl to their freedom.

Work resumes at Montana mine following fatal underground machinery accident

Work has resumed at a precious metals mine in south-central Montana a day after a 24-year-old worker died in an underground machinery accident, mine officials said.

Damage prevention and safety: SUE, vac excavation increase safety and save time

When it comes to underground utilities, safety is paramount. As municipalities grow and various areas undergo advancement and development, the number of buried utilities grows.

USIC launches redesigned website for underground infrastructure damage prevention

The new site design and updated content further the company’s goal of building greater awareness of the essential role it plays in protecting America’s critical underground infrastructure.

CGA’s DIRT report correlates infrastructure investment with increased excavation damage

(UI) — Common Ground Alliance (CGA), the national nonprofit trade association dedicated to protecting underground utility lines, people who dig near them and their communities, recently announced the findings from its 2022 Damage Information Reporting Tool (DIRT). It revealed concerning increases across key damage indicators.

Charges filed 5 years after underground gas explosion leveled home and injured 3

Attorney General Michelle Henry said Wednesday that the criminal complaint alleges methane gas in an underground storage reservoir owned and operated by Equitrans L.P. migrated upward into a deteriorating company storage well and eventually reached the Greene County home, leading to the blast.

Cleanup is done on a big Kansas oil spill on the Keystone system, the company and EPA say

The operator of the Keystone pipeline system has finished cleaning up a massive December 2022 oil spill, and the creek affected by it is flowing naturally again, the company and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said.

Innovative solution for managing I&I challenges in sanitary districts

(UI) — A major challenge sanitary districts everywhere face is recurring and growing inflow and infiltration (I&I), from substantial amounts of groundwater and stormwater entering the sewer during periods of heavy rain. This issue is of paramount importance, as heavy rainfall can cause the intrusion of large volumes of groundwater and stormwater into the sewer system, overwhelming pump stations and treatment plants, and even causing costly sewer overflows.

GPRS launches Water & Sewer Damage Awareness Week

(UI) — From Oct. 23–27, GPRS will offer free safety presentations to anyone responsible for water and/or wastewater systems. The firm will also share additional safety information throughout the week on its social media channels.

Inside infrastructure: GIS offers best way to improve underground facility maps

At a time when America is making huge investments in underground infrastructure markets, damage prevention to underground facilities is fundamental and all stakeholders must ensure that their responsibilities are met.

Excavation workers hit gas line in La Pine, Ore., subdivision

(UI) — In La Pine, Oregon, an excavation crew working in a newly developed subdivision had an incident where they accidentally hit a two-inch natural gas line. This led to a gas leak that raised concerns among nearby residents, resulting in advisories to shelter in place and avoid outdoor open flames until the repairs were completed.

Pennsylvania candy company contests OSHA citations following March 2023 natural gas explosion that killed seven

According to R.M. Palmer Co., an NTSB investigation found that natural gas was leaking from a DuPont service tee under a public road less than 2 feet from underground piping that ran between the company’s headquarters and the building that ultimately exploded.

VertiGIS launches underground utilities locator for contractors to prevent asset damage

This innovative solution for underground utilities revolutionizes the way companies handle the demand of 811, Call-Before-You-Dig and One-Call responses with efficiency and accuracy.

Contractor killed in San Francisco trench collapse, prompts investigation

(UI) — A contractor in San Francisco's Lower Haight died on Sept. 28 after a trench beneath a sidewalk collapsed. While five workers managed to escape, one male worker became trapped under eight feet of dirt and debris.

Maui's wildfire tragedy ignites calls for safer electric grids with underground power lines

Lawmakers probing the cause of last month's deadly Maui wildfire did not get many answers during Thursday's congressional hearing on the role the electrical grid played in the disaster.

Underground infrastructure damage trending upward, Common Ground Alliance reports

The annual DIRT Report provides a comprehensive accounting and analysis of damages to underground infrastructure in the U.S. and Canada to help stakeholders understand the current damage landscape and the factors contributing to underground facility damages.

Sewer gas leak hospitalizes four DC high school students

(UI) — Four high school students from McKinley Tech High School in Washington, D.C., have been hospitalized due to hydrogen sulfide, commonly known as sewer gas.

Scan Tech NYC provides underground scanning technology for Manhattan construction industry

Scan Tech's technology accurately maps out hidden structures like telecommunication lines, plumbing pipes, metal, rebar, electrical lines, and more.

Recent floods highlight climate risks to New England's aging infrastructure

The floods this week in Massachusetts that put a few dams at risk have raised concern the structures may increasingly be at risk as stronger and wetter storms hit the region.

Gas leak forces evacuation of Southern California homes; no injuries reported

A Southern California neighborhood was evacuated for more than six hours early Thursday due to a large leak of natural gas from an underground pipe, authorities said.

McElroy awarded prestigious safety award from Oklahoma Safety Council

The Pinnacle of Safety Award is given to companies that achieve the highest levels of excellence in safety and health. Companies are judged on management commitment, safety culture, and safety performance in the areas of safety and health.

Underground fire bursts through manholes, prompting evacuations in Colorado Springs

(UI) — An underground fire in downtown Colorado Springs early Monday morning led to evacuations and power outages as flames shot up through manholes, causing a significant disruption in the area.

AT&T fiber optic cable vandalism sparks investigation in Tuolumne County, Calif.

(UI) — The Tuolumne County Sheriff's Office is actively seeking assistance from the public regarding a recent act of vandalism that occurred on Aug. 30, resulting in a widespread disruption of cell service throughout Tuolumne County, California.

Underground utilities ruled out as factors in Pittsburgh explosion that killed six

The Allegheny County fire marshal’s office said all potential outside factors were eliminated, including wells, pipelines and other utilities, pinpointing the source as a home on Rustic Ridge Drive in Plum Borough.

GPRS launches new safety initiative to address aging water, wastewater infrastructure

(UI) — Ground Penetrating Radar Systems LLC (GPRS) has announced a new safety initiative designed to help municipalities and facilities regain control of their water, sewer, and stormwater infrastructure. Water & Sewer Damage Awareness Week (WSDAW) will run Oct. 23-27, 2023.

Common Ground Alliance releases utility-mapping case study to reduce underground utility damage

The case study introduces the ambitious Minnesota Utilities Mapping Project (MUMP), which aims to provide real-time, ticket-level mapped visualizations of underground utilities to accredited designers, locators and excavators to improve the damage prevention system’s efficiency and outcomes.

Ruptured sewer pipe leads to 300,000-gallon sewage spill in Annapolis

(UI) — An incident involving a damaged sewer pipe has resulted in the release of around 300,000 gallons of sewage into a neighborhood in Annapolis, Maryland.