Quote Originally Posted by Mke View Post
uhhh.... A couple of things. I worked for a firm performing private utility locates for 6 yrs, and to generalize us in doing survey work is borderline insulting. Myself, and others here who do preform private locates can validate the fact that while some work was survey, the majority of work I preformed was for construction projects. It has got to the point, here in the pacific northwest that any major construction project will have a contract for private locates to come in, and to locate, as well as verify utility owned lines.

Second of all, I know survey work has recieved a negative reputation because " no one is going to dig on it". I have personally seen public one-call locators ignore Survey tickets. (Survey tickets are due in 10 days, not 48hrs). I mark locate jobs like someone is going to dig on them, because I know eventually someone will.

I don't want this to become a pissing match, but there is people in this field that want the paycheck, and not the work. unfortunately, most of those attitudes are in public locating. These attitudes last very shortly in the private side. They can still arise on the private side..... I work with one, but since we are talking in generalities, i'll take a private locator of a public one anyday. no offense to those of you out there, i'm just going with the percentages.

Survey work varies so much state to state. In some states no survey work may be called in on a call before you dig ticket. I have worked in such a state and when we found someone trying to sneak such a ticket through we advised out supervisor. The ticket was then taken out of the system by management and never marked. The company that called in the ticket was notified to hire a private locate firm to get that job done.

So what percentage of survey work comprises the work load for a private locate firm varies by state or province.

I also agree that all locates need to be accurately marked. For the noobie consider this.

We cannot remember every job we have done and what we will not remember when we go back to the site is if we bothered to mark it accurately or not. The direct danger to a locator in such a case is next week getting a real dig ticket at such a location. We come back, see out marks and just freshen them up. If we mismarked it the first time due to being in a hurry, not thinking it important or whatever, we tend to forget this.

I was working a busy area where I averaged around 50 locates a day. If I get another ticket on a previous address I had done as much as 300 locates since I had been there last which is a lot to keep in one's head. So I had darn better have marked it correctly before. Also I had better check my completed ticket file, my software had that feature, and see what utility was being put in. It it was something I mark for then I had better tone and see if it went in.

So we may be coming back to the site, someone's planning is dependent on our marks, the people who called in the first ticket may decide to go ahead and dig. So Mke is correct, just mark the ticket correctly and to the best of our ability.