T2 Utility Engineers (T2ue) is sharing our Subsurface Utility Engineering (SUE) expertise at the 2022 ASCE UESI Pipelines conference in two peer-reviewed presentations which focus on the application and benefits of using SUE and the ASCE 38 Standard. Both presentations are on August 2, 2022.
Flooding is an aspect of climate change that is frequently in the news, whether it be coastal or inland. Storm or surge water is traditionally moved through large pipes. Increasing pipe capacity to move more water involves more pipes, larger pipes, or a combination, usually through a crowded underground environment of public and private utilities and critical infrastructure.
A unique challenge to finding space to upgrade water systems is that gravity is used to move water rather than pressurized pipes. History and experience tell us that knowing the precise location and nature of all the other utilities - known and unknown, abandoned, and active, or repurposed – is a prudent first step in design.
Several new technologies, combined with traditional subsurface utility engineering investigation and documentation techniques, are the engineering solution to character the existing underground to manage and reduce costly construction surprises.
With an ever-changing infrastructure environment, utility owners have faced increasing challenges in managing damage prevention. Until recently, little has evolved since the start of One-Call and the 811 system. Subsurface Utility Engineering incorporates the use of appropriate geophysical equipment, surveying, mapping, and improves the depiction of the underground assets, which has a positive impact on damage prevention as well as improvement of utility records. By focusing more on accuracy and less on assigning risk between the excavator and utility owner, both parties can benefit from fewer damages.
Now, municipalities and states are beginning to integrate the technology and techniques used in Subsurface Utility Engineering and the ASCE 38 standard to increase the accuracy of utility locations in their One-Call and damage prevention processes. Both utility owners and excavation contractors can benefit from this more sustainable approach. Case studies show how Subsurface Utility Engineering has been successfully integrated into One-Call /Damage Prevention programs as a risk mitigation strategy.