October Town Hall: How Can Industry Stakeholders Better Leverage Data Analytics to Reduce Damages and Improve Planning?

Hello, Readers!

On October 12th, 2023, we embarked on a journey through the realm of data-driven insights as it relates to utility damage prevention. Our Town Hall, titled "How Can Industry Stakeholders Better Leverage Data Analytics to Reduce Damages and Improve Planning?", featured industry leaders discussing the transformative potential of data analytics in protecting our vital underground infrastructure. Thank you to the Excavation Safety Guide, our sponsor for the October Town Hall.

Our participants included:

• Scott Landes, CEO, Excavation Safety Alliance (Moderator)
• Louis Panzer, Executive Director, North Carolina 811
• Dimitris Pavlou MBA, MSc, PE, Manager Damage Prevention, Atmos Energy
• Brian Peters, Chief Product Officer, KorTerra, Inc.
• Jason Poyser, Director of Locating, Metronet
• Duane Rodgers, CEO, PelicanCorp

Key Topics Explored:

  1. Understanding Data Analytics: What is data analytics, and how can it be harnessed to enhance damage prevention processes?
  2. Data Management: How can organizations integrate data analytics without overwhelming the 811/Notification Center processes?
  3. Quality Data: The importance of obtaining high-quality data in damage prevention.
  4. Measuring Success: What key performance indicators (KPIs) should industry stakeholders focus on to gauge the effectiveness of their damage prevention programs?
  5. Actionable Insights: What steps can be taken to improve excavation safety and reduce damages?


→ Brian: Start small, utilize the data you already have, and make an actionable plan.
→ Dimitris: Identify what metrics are important based on your company's activity. Track trends.
→ Louis: Take actions at each little step along the way. Be consistent. Communicate.
→ Jason: Know what you want to accomplish from the beginning.
→ Duane: Improve the quality of GIS data. The more data available the safer we will all be.

Audience Engagement:

Our audience actively participated, contributing insights. From the nuances of data analytics to practical solutions for effective damage prevention, it was a dynamic exchange of ideas.

Kenneth Hill of Crown Castle suggested that "the DIRT Report is created from data from the facility owners and the Call Centers, very little data from the excavators. [It] does not accurately account for mismarks and no marks. Also, they do not account for private property lines or lines on private property that the facility owner does not mark out."

Kurt Youngs of Youngs Excavating emphasized the importance of utilizing GIS/GPS during installation, noting that "unless we're utilizing GIS/GPS during installation, then your maps are not necessarily accurate. Some municipalities require this already."

Watch the Recording:

You can revisit the entire Town Hall by watching the full video here.
Don't miss out on all of the audience commentary by clicking on the chat log here.

Next on the Horizon:

Our commitment to open dialogue continues. Our next Town Hall is scheduled for November 9th at 10:30 AM CST, focusing on "How can existing fiber optic cables be used for live damage prevention and enhanced security?" Don't miss the opportunity to explore innovative solutions to industry challenges.

Supporting Companies Make it Possible:ESAMemberbadge-1

We are grateful to the supporting companies that make our initiatives, like the Town Halls, possible. These organizations play an instrumental role in advancing excavation safety and damage prevention. To learn more about how you can become a supporting company, please visit this link.

Stay tuned for more updates and insights, and thank you for joining us in championing safety and fostering collaboration in the field of damage prevention. See you at our next Town Hall!



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