Damage Prevention & Safety

GLTA Announces Annual Meeting Plans

The Great Lakes Trenchless Association (GLTA) is partnering with MISS DIG 811 for the 2018 Annual Membership Meeting, Conference & Expo on March 15 – 16. The event will be held at the Soaring Eagle Casino, Resort & Waterpark in Mt. Pleasant, MI. This convention will consist of four educational sess..

Utilities to Conduct Storm Restoration Drill to Help Prepare Employees for Real-Life Events

Ohio Edison and Pennsylvania Power, subsidiaries of FirstEnergy Corp., have announced they will conduct a training drill this week to test the companies’ storm restoration process for when severe weather causes wide-spread power outages in the region. Designed to train employees assigned to storm o..

OSHA Cites South Dakota Company After Worker Buried in Trench Collapse

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited First Dakota Enterprises Inc., for failing to protect its workers from trench collapse hazards. The Fort Pierre-based company faces proposed penalties of $95,064. On May 23, 2017, a 34-year-old worker was ..

New DIRT Report Estimates Damage to Buried Utilities Cost Society at Least $1.5 Billion in 2016

The Common Ground Alliance (CGA) today announced findings from its comprehensive 2016 Damage Information Reporting Tool (DIRT) Report. The report, which is the sum of all 2016 data submitted anonymously and voluntarily by facility operators, utility locating companies, one call centers,..

Dominion Energy Ohio Reminds People to Call 811 Before Digging

In honor of National Safe Digging Day tomorrow, Aug. 11, Dominion Energy Ohio today announced a reminder that Ohio law requires property owners and contractors to call 8-1-1 — to have underground utility lines marked — at least two business days, but no more than 10 business days, prior to any diggi..

Utility Stresses Calling 811 Before Digging

In honor of National Safe Digging Day on Friday, August 11, Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) is asking all Californians to help prevent damage to gas pipelines and other underground utilities. With a free call to 811 or submission on 811express.com at least two working days ahead of any diggi..

Dangers Of Using Damaged Jetter Hose

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Illinois American Water’s Lincoln District Celebrates Safety Milestone

llinois American Water’s Lincoln District today announced it has gone nine years without experiencing any lost-time accidents. Illinois American Water employees work around the clock to provide an essential service critical for daily life, public health and fire protection. The work performed can i..

PG&E Survey Finds Call 811 Underutilized in California

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) today announced findings from a recent survey of 1,750 of its customers that shows 811 – the free service to mark underground utility lines – is well-known but misunderstood and underused in Northern and Central California. Common misconceptions among custome..

3 Magic Numbers For Underground Construction, Maintenance

Take a moment and flip back to read the title of this magazine. It’s Underground Construction, and deals with – well, underground construction. Water, sewer, gas, telecom and electric; that pretty much covers all the bases. It also covers a lot of miles. According to the Common Ground Alliance, ther..

Illinois American Water’s Cairo District Earns National Safety Award for a Second Time

Illinois American Water’s Cairo District received the American Water Works Association (AWWA) Wendell R. LaDue Utility Safety Award for excellence in safety. The award recognizes distinguished safety programs by water utilities and requires excellent safety records for five consecutive years, as wel..

Man Killed While Working on Maryland Water Utility Project

OXON HILL, Md. (AP) – A man working on a water main replacement project in Maryland has died in an apparent trench collapse. Police in Prince George’s County said Wednesday on Twitter that the man was killed while performing utility work and that they do not suspect foul play. The Washington Suburb..

PLCA Asks for Short-Haul Exemption from ELD Mandate

The Pipe Line Contractors Association (PLCA) has requested a short-haul exemption from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s electronic logging device mandate set to take effect on Dec. 18 for all pipeline contractor vehicle drivers. According to the PLCA, drivers mostly utilize the sho..

Authorities ID Man Killed in Pipe Cleaning Accident

BROWNSVILLE, Wis. (AP) — Authorities have released the name of a 20-year-old man killed in an industrial accident in Brownsville. The Dodge County Sheriff’s Office identifies the victim as Treston Isham of Fond du Lac. Authorities say Isham was cleaning pipes at utility contractor Michels Corp. wh..

Water Utility Nears Safety Milestone

Mesa Water District has announced it is approaching four years without a lost time accident due to a robust environmental health and safety program that has helped the district achieve a “gold standard” of safety performance. Mesa Water’s overall safety rating improved 15 percent between 2014 and 2..

Autopsy: Asphyxia From Gas Cause of Man's Death in Sewer Pit

DECATUR, Ind. (AP) — An autopsy has determined that a 40-year-old Indiana man died of asphyxia from toxic gas while working in a sewer pit at a Decatur meat shop. The Adams County coroner on Thursday identified the victim as Justin Manley of Decatur. Another man, Mark Manley, was in critical ..

3 Workers Rescued in Wisconsin Trench Collapse

CUBA CITY, Wis. (AP) – Authorities say three workers have been rescued after being trapped when a trench caved in near Cuba City. Lafayette County Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Troy Loeffelholz tells WKOW-TV (http://bit.ly/2tpxs6W ) one worker became trapped Tuesday when one of the walls of the eight-foot..

Steam Pipe Explosion Buckles Street in Downtown Baltimore

BALTIMORE (AP) — An underground steam pipe explosion rocked downtown Baltimore during Tuesday afternoon’s rush hour, buckling the street, shattering windows on cars and buildings, and gushing a plume several stories high for more than an hour, authorities said. Five people suffered injuries that ..

Utility Earns National Safety Award

For the second straight year, Florida Public Utilities Company, a subsidiary of Chesapeake Utilities Corporation, has received a Safety Achievement Award from the American Gas Association for excellence in employee safety. The selection was based on criteria that included professional and person..

Rice Electronics Launches Connected Worker Solution

Rice Electronics has launched the Connected Worker Solution with Intel® IoT technology. Designed to improve the safety and productivity of field workers in industrial environments, the end-to-end IoT solution using Rice Electronics smart devices along with Intel-based IoT gateways provides robust co..

OSHA Announces Inaugural ‘Safe + Sound Week’

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has designated June 12-18, 2017, as “Safe + Sound Week,” a new nationwide effort that calls on organizations of all sizes in a wide range of industries to raise awareness of the value and importance of workplace safety and ..

Pipeline Developer Under Investigation for Alleged Construction Violations

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The developer of the Dakota Access oil pipeline, which is expected to begin shipping oil to contractors on Thursday, will face scrutiny later this summer over whether it violated North Dakota rules during construction. North Dakota’s Public Service Commission is looking ..

OSHA Probing Trench Collapse that Put Man in Hospital

EMERY, S.D. (AP) — The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating a trench collapse in Emery that put a man in the hospital. Area Director Sheila Stanley tells the Daily Republic (http://bit.ly/2qjshb1) that an OSHA crew was on the scene Thursday. The inquiry comes after a Tues..

Man Buried Alive in Trench Collapse, Saved by Co-workers

EMERY, S.D. (AP) – Authorities say quick intervention by his co-workers likely saved a man buried when a water-sewer trench collapsed in Emery. Fire Chief Brian Leitheiser says that except for the man’s hand, the construction worker was completely covered in dirt Tuesday. He was on a crew from a Fo..

Seattle Firefighter Sues After Injuries from Pipeline Explosion

SEATTLE (AP) — A Seattle firefighter is suing Puget Sound Energy and one of its contractors, saying he has lingering injuries after being knocked out by a natural-gas explosion that leveled two buildings last year. The Seattle Times reports (https://goo.gl/IAvBLJ ) that 50-year-old Jeff Markoff fil..

Report: Pipeline Incidents Drop 10% in 2016-17 Period

API, along with the Association of Oil Pipe Lines (AOPL), released the pipeline industry’s 2017-2019 Pipeline Safety Excellence Strategic Plan and 2016 Performance Report summarizing the industry’s track record on pipeline safety and highlighting the steps pipeline operators are taking to advance sa..

Washington Governor Signs Safe Digging Bill

OLYMPIA, Wash (AP) – Governor Inslee signed a bill designed to save lives, or at least prevent headaches. We’ve all seen the signs: Call before you dig. The worst case scenario for ignoring the warning is tragic: An exploding gas line or thousands of volts of electricity shooting up through a shov..

Pipefitter Killed By Falling Tree Branch

WASHINGTON (AP) — A maintenance worker at the U.S. Capitol has died after a large tree branch fell on top of him. A statement from the Architect of the Capitol, Stephen Ayers, identified the man who was killed as Matthew McClanahan. The statement says McClanahan was working on an irrigation pipe on..

Fort Worth, Atmos Team-Up For Crossbore Prevention

The city of Fort Worth, TX, and Atmos Energy, the area’s gas service provider, are taking a proactive approach to address possible crossbores in the city’s sanitary sewer pipes. Crossbores – an intersection of two or more underground utilities – is an ongoing concern of municipalities across the co..

Digging Safely Starts With A Call To 811

Whether you are a professional excavator, contractor, engineer or utility owner, you play an important role in keeping people safe with every dig. Laws governing excavation vary by state, and they can be confusing. Answering the question, “Do I have to call 811?” can be difficult if you don’t unders..