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Best Practices for Underground Utility Damage Prevention

In most cases, calling 811 (one-call) to schedule a public utility locate is only the first step for underground utility damage prevention. 

One-call may not have all the equipment necessary for complete results and they might not be able to locate underground utilities in all the areas you requested if the locations move onto private property and outside the bounds of One-Calls locating services. It’s a wise decision to hire a private utility locating company to verify actual utility locations and/or cover all the areas you need.

How do you best choose a private utility locating company?

  • Verify Credentials - Before hiring an underground utility locating company, you should verify credentials for underground utility locating services as well as verifying prior project performance.
  • The Least Expensive Doesn't Mean the Most Qualified - Choosing the lowest bid doesn’t necessarily mean the lowest cost in the end. In fact, attempting to contain damage prevention costs by choosing the lowest underground utility locating price can greatly increase the exposure to other risks that could prove far more costly eventually. Keeping up with state of art equipment and training for locators is very costly. When underground utility locating rates are squeezed, locating companies are forced to underinvest in these areas, providing inferior services.

  • Know the Companies Work Ethic - Individual worker qualifications are critical because many underground utility locating companies have “hire as I need” practices; they have significant employee turn-over rates due to the seasonal or lack of work. Underground utility locating is a very specialized work and utility locators without proper
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    training or experience can result in huge liability risks.
  • Understand the Equipment Limitations - There are limitations of the technologies used, including ground penetrating radar, pipe and cable locators and other tools. Providing historical records including documents and blueprints (not even necessarily accurate) to them could prove to be invaluable in underground utility locating and ultimately damage prevention. Always be sure proper communications takes place with the locating company for the property access. Utility locators might need access to additional areas besides the targeted survey area for best results.

By providing a professional and courteous experience each and every job, one that our clients have come to trust, Utility Survey Corp. has cemented itself as the right choice for all your private utility locating needs.

Proceed With Confidence and Call Utility Survey today!

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