August Town Hall: How Can We Improve Excavation Safety With Fair Enforcement?

Hello, Readers!

On August 10th, we hosted a Town Hall centered on the topic of "How Can We Improve Excavation Safety With Fair Enforcement?" This Town Hall was sponsored by Global Excavation Safety Conference. In the midst of rapid infrastructure developments, the intricacies of One Call enforcement have become more critical than ever. This discussion sought to dive into the prevailing challenges and the feasible advancements that can be incorporated into this crucial system.

Scott Landes, CEO of Excavation Safety Alliance, moderated the Town Hall, inviting insights from an impressive panel of experts spanning diverse sectors. 

🔸Stephen Allen, Energy Worldnet (EWN)
🔸Shane Ayers, Stake Center Locating
🔸Kemp Garcia, LineScape of WA & NUCA of Washington
🔸Steven Giambrone, State of Louisiana
🔸John Hass, VEIT
🔸Chad Mathiowetz, Mathiowetz Construction Company

If the live Town Hall escaped your calendar, fear not! You can catch up on every exchange shared by our panelists by watching the full video.

The panel touched upon pivotal aspects such as:

- The operational mechanism of enforcement in various states.
- Assessing the equity of enforcement for all concerned parties.
- Vital changes to bolster the current system.
- Addressing specific audience queries, such as Indiana’s singular focus on gas in One Call and the steps to take when local enforcement is absent.
- Strategic steps to ensure fairness in enforcement and its tangible impact on damage prevention and excavation safety.
- Recommendations for legislative amendments to further the cause.

Our engaged audience added valuable insights of their own to the conversation:

"While we may not always know exactly where our utilities are, we have a process in place that doesn't allow our locate techs to go forward unless they follow our trouble locate process. If it delays the ticket until our gas department can come out and dig it up and make it locatable, that is how it has to be."

- Lisa McKnight, Damage Prevention Director, City of Lawrenceville

"Enforcement of better mapping, taking advantage of today's technology, is imperative. The onus should lean more towards asset owners ensuring that those excavating have a clear map to prevent mishaps."

- Sher Kirk, Operations Director, Utility Safety Partners

A resounding 95.4% of attendees vouched for the value of attending the Town Hall, best captured by Jason Petrilli of Colorado 811 who said, "This was my favorite ESA [Town Hall] yet. A lot of great information and truly learned a lot. Thank you all!"

For those keen on gleaning every bit of this enriching discussion, the full Town Hall video awaits you.

Remember to circle September 14th, 2023, from 10:30 - 11:30 AM CDT on your calendars, as we unpack ways to prevent damage to pipelines and cables on farms and ranches in our next Town Hall. Let’s continue the conversation and drive impactful change together! See you there!

Click here to register for September's Town Hall!


Staff Report


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