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Thread: Do you ever?

  1. #16
    Senior Member underground quester's Avatar
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    The other day I did a locate for a contractor to dig in new gas mains near NEW "traffic" power feeds (for red/yellow/green lights at an intersection).

    I did the locate and did not mention that I had found they were only 18" below ground. Well here in Alberta they are most often 5 feet deep and the last foot to 18" is sand as a heads up to anyone digging.

    The contractor who installed it had placed the power WAY too shallow and not used the sand as a warning to future excavators.

    The contractor installing the gas usually digs 3 feet deep so of course they hit the lines and took out the traffic lights.

    I was called to the emergency and redid my locate (my marks were okay). After some finger pointing, the original contractor who installed the traffic light power (about two months ago) was found at fault.

    Had I given them a heads up, would have saved a hit. Here is a situation where I might have wanted to say MAKE SURE YOU POTHOLE/hand expose. I AM FINDING SOMETHING UNUSUAL.

  2. #17
    Senior Member sprayandpray's Avatar
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    [


    [Had I given them a heads up, would have saved a hit. Here is a situation where I might have wanted to say MAKE SURE YOU POTHOLE/hand expose. I AM FINDING SOMETHING UNUSUAL.[/QUOTE]

    If they didn't follow the law, ie: Do not use power equipment w/in 1.5 - 2 ft of the marks, why do you assume they would have listened to you? I don't think it's our job to baby-sit these contractors. I agree that we should help them whenever we can and educate them in a way that protects the facilities but I will never feel guilty about the dumb-ass mistakes they make constantly. Just my opinion.
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  3. #18
    Senior Member underground quester's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sprayandpray View Post
    [


    [Had I given them a heads up, would have saved a hit. Here is a situation where I might have wanted to say MAKE SURE YOU POTHOLE/hand expose. I AM FINDING SOMETHING UNUSUAL.
    If they didn't follow the law, ie: Do not use power equipment w/in 1.5 - 2 ft of the marks, why do you assume they would have listened to you? I don't think it's our job to baby-sit these contractors. I agree that we should help them whenever we can and educate them in a way that protects the facilities but I will never feel guilty about the dumb-ass mistakes they make constantly. Just my opinion.[/QUOTE]


    Yes, good point spray!

    I guess the new contractors argument was hey, what the heck is this line doing at 18"? Having said that, clearly, they did not hand dig/pothole anyway to ensure they knew alignment and depths before they dug.

    Good catch. A point I forgot about.

  4. #19
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    we are not allowed to tell depth. thats what we were told in one of many meetings

  5. #20
    Senior Member LadyLeatherneck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    Had a contractor the other day call in an emergency. Was in someone else's area. Got there and saw marks everywhere. Contractor was on-site and was asked "What's the emergency?" Contractor, "How deep is this line?"
    Nb22x likes this.

  6. #21
    Senior Member yahoo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    uhhhhhh i just checked it and (actually it's 3 foot) i think it is maybe 6 inches..........call me back and let me know
    Nb22x likes this.

  7. #22
    Moderator Goldenboy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by LocatingLarry View Post
    Had a contractor the other day call in an emergency. Was in someone else's area. Got there and saw marks everywhere. Contractor was on-site and was asked "What's the emergency?" Contractor, "How deep is this line?"
    Just tell the contractor that after he exposes the line by hand he can use a tape measure and see exactly how deep it is.

  8. #23
    Senior Member yahoo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    golden boy ...good one dude....ahhhahahhahahhhahh

  9. #24
    Senior Member underground quester's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    Who was it that said in a previous memo on the old forum

    "kick the ground with your boot and tell them it is deeper that that"
    Success is a journey, not a destination...

  10. #25
    Senior Member gypsygirl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    I know for a fact that my equipment depth reading isn't accurate on a regular basis. I was in a field locating electric for field tile repair. Depth stated it was 12' actually was about 5'. Then about 10' farther down the line it said it was 4' 8"... which was about right... then on the same line, a bit farther down... it was 2'... nope... it was about 3 1/2' ... so giving out depths is really not anyone's benefit especially if they have a backhoe in the area! My response to that is "It's somewhere between the bottom of my foot and the top of the line."

  11. #26
    Senior Member beyond help's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    I just tell them it must not be deep enough if you have to ask.
    STRESS: The confusion created when one's mind overrides the body's basic desire to choke the living daylights out of some idiot who desperately deserves it.

  12. #27
    Junior Member MidnightElectric's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    The only contractor I ever give depth to is the city water dept. Their forman and I have "looked out for" each other several times, and they pothole it anyway. Although two weeks ago, had I known, I would have told the road crew that the 336ct fiber, that feeds an ENTIRE county, was only 8" (yes I said 8") deep. The dozer made one pass scraping off the sod and saw the interduct sticking up on his way back.
    It's called an easement sir. It just looks like your yard.

  13. #28
    Senior Member Dave72's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    I had a contractor who was jobbed with having to use a big dozer to remove overburden from along a pipe run at a hydro electric station.. the hill was like 30 deg slope and the comm cable was right in his work zone.. I saw that peak and null agreed, so my depth would be accurate.. but I told him flat out that theres no way Im gonna locate this cable every 6" on the whole run.. at any point the direct-buried cable might come up over a rock or something and be shallower.. our policy is 3ft either side of the paint you must hand or vac the cable to find it.

    I dont get why some of these outfits dont bring in some cheap labourers to hand dig and not worry about the costs of a hit.
    (May you live in interesting times)

  14. #29
    Junior Member geez70's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    depends.... If they are actually digging with a shovel to find it, then I will.. I guess that would be only if they are on site. Otherwise I don't call them. They should be exposing it anyway.. I space the marks a little closer and take a bunch of pics..

  15. #30
    Moderator Goldenboy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you ever?

    Here's a CATV trunk and feeder,Electric Primary and 144 strand fiber damage. The homeowner never called in a ticket. If they would have called in a ticket I could have warned them that the utility lines were only 6 inches deep. The homeowner had rented a skidster and was going to do some grading. Now I think they'll need to take out a loan to pay for the lines.

    BTW the lines were buried at normal depth but when they graded this lot originally when the home was finished they took a bunch of dirt away which made them lower. They were'nt installed that shallow.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails shallowdamage.jpg  

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