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Thread: It's official. It's dig season again.

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    Senior Member Bad Robot's Avatar
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    Default It's official. It's dig season again.

    That frozen lake has thawed. The birds are building their nests. Grass greening up everywhere.

    And my phone ringing early every morning from project contractors. They are wondering if I can come mark out their project, because the worlds greatest contract locating company can't seem to find enough real locators to man the job. Again.

    So, maybe half a dozen for IL. And four for Wis. And four or so for Indiana this year? That should increase profits, let's try that!!

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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    Almost 30 tickets for drops on Monday. Today 32 stump grinding tickets. The crews are back on the bridge. I got 25 tickets for sign installs on Tuesday, so they can start on the bypass again. Four miles of fencing and riprap along the bypass. All those surveys tickets during the winter are coming in for fiber bores. Yep it is start of the dig season. If the weather is as shitty as they predict I might have to work my first Saturday already lol

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    Administrator TheCableVine's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    I've been going at it pretty steady since Friday. Tuesday I got home at 8:15. Today is my first day without carryovers since Thursday.
    "Change does not always equal progress."

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    4Q2
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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    It's still snowing in VT today calling for 10-16" fresh pow. Woods are still skiing great!

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    Senior Member Dave72's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    Frost is still coming out of the ground here.. lots of water main breaks to go locate our tel lines for !
    (May you live in interesting times)

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    Senior Member sprayandpray's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    Ahh, it must be Dig Season , I can smell those 12 hr days, 6 and 7 days a week. Smells green to me - like $$$$$!( We just picked up VZ from Utiliquest and they left us about 300- 400 past due tickets - sorry Bastards!)
    I might not be as good as I once was, but I'm as good once as I ever was !


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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    I have only been out in the field now 6 weeks and I can hardly keep up. I have my whole county and I have to get at least 20 day done or I'm screwed for the weekend. 55hr weeks this soon kinda blows. "if you don't get it all done during the week yourmgoingmto have to work the weekend". Is the perfect motivator to work quickly.

    Posted on iPhone sorry no spell check.

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    Senior Member big boots mcghee's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    The cable drops and the stump grinds and the sign installs are one thing. We're getting those in by the hundreds some days. No, it's the road construction jobs, infrastructure upgrades, and bore tickets that have me behind. I wouldn't mind as long as I could work the hours to get everything done, but big brother hasn't given the overtime green light yet so it's been a real treat trying to get everything done in 40-45 hours a week.
    My boots may be red but I'm no clown.

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    Senior Member Bad Robot's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    Why is that your tenured techs are expected to juggle heavy projects to the point of having serious stuff fall through the cracks, year after year? How is this profitable? I really and truly do not understand the logic here. And I understand the contract locating business model that is based on ripping off the customer and the employee simultaneously. But this is just plain insanity.

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    Mke
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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    Robot, I believe that some tenured techs are the only ones who know how to handle some of these projects. (emphasis on "some") I have a co worker who doesn't quite understand the ins and outs of the projects and how to juggle all the requests. If he has two requests on his shoulders he becomes a babbling window licker. (No not two One-call Requests). When in the crunch it is easier for the company to toss the requests to someone who knows how to manage them, or dull them out to the noobs so the noobs are not hating life.

    Weather its fair or not, its above my pay grade.

    mke

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    Senior Member Bad Robot's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    Oh yeah, I'm with you on this Mke. I just don't get how it is cost effective to load these guys up with projects and burn them out. Then try to replace them with guys that can't find their ass with two hands and a flashlight! They used to give these guys a route or a territory. And sure, they used to get behind sometimes because of emergencies, but they always seemed to be able to get things cleaned up over the weekend. Now they are throwing all of the projects on the vets, and they have no route. And when they get close to 40hrs. they are SENDING THE TECH HOME!! That way they can save money on overtime! Trouble is, the guy gets back in the field the next day, and it's worse than he left it. He is already behind and on a slippery slope. Brilliant!

    Then I get the calls asking if I can throw marks down for contractors. And of course I cannot. I will however help these techs when I can, but there are limits.

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    Senior Member Bad Robot's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    Quote Originally Posted by sprayandpray View Post
    Ahh, it must be Dig Season , I can smell those 12 hr days, 6 and 7 days a week. Smells green to me - like $$$$$!( We just picked up VZ from Utiliquest and they left us about 300- 400 past due tickets - sorry Bastards!)
    Where did you guys pick up Verizon? From what I recall you guys were working some really long hours in past seasons, so all bets are off this season eh?

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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    It seems as though any day now all hell is going to break loose. i think we have enough people, should be good. looks like texas misfired on their hiring plans again this year, they should talk to the midwest teams about how to staff properly, then they wouldnt have to ask for help every year. weird how that works.

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    Senior Member sprayandpray's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Robot View Post
    Where did you guys pick up Verizon? From what I recall you guys were working some really long hours in past seasons, so all bets are off this season eh?
    Utiliquest lost their Atmos Gas contract to Heath and Consolidated and because they had underbid everyone for the Verizon contract , could not profitably stay and locate Verizon alone. We graciously stepped in and picked up Verizon at our original bid price.

    As far as I know, we got the Verizon Contract all over Texas, with a few isolated exceptions.

    Now for the fun part USIC calculated the Verizon contract would require an increase of 30 locators and they would pick up about half from Utiliquest --- Wrong! Only about 4 came over from UQ (the others going to Heath or Consolidated). We have 4 to 6 loaned in locators for Michigan, Wisconsin etc. and 1 class going with about 6 people left.

    Then , much to our dismay, the UQ locators quit locating anything that requied them to get out of their trucks, leaving us to inherit 500 plus past-due tickets that we will now have to run on again just to locate the unmarked Verizon facilities.

    So, if you need work, Texas is the spot!
    I might not be as good as I once was, but I'm as good once as I ever was !


    It's better to be Pissed Off than Pissed On or Stood On and Pissed Off Of !


    The views expressed on this website/blog are mine alone and do not reflect the views of my employer. or my wife , if that matters.

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    Senior Member Turk182's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's official. It's dig season again.

    I still talk to guys on my old crew, they lost four experienced techs, including me, and so far they have gotten two trainees to replace them, and a promise that they will get a couple more trainees in a month or so. One guy is covering the territory that should be covered by 4 techs, I predict a record number of damages for that crew.

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