Utility Locating Services
Commercial - Residential - Industrial
Utility Locating with Ground Penetrating Radar
To ensure the overall timely success of the job, utility detection is critical to any construction project where subsurface excavation is planned. If ignored, budget overruns multiply, your schedule turns chaotic and there’s risk of injuries taking place on your job site. The standard is one-call utility locating, a state-sponsored public service that is required for every project. However, the scope of this service is limited to areas that only serve the public’s interest. To achieve the complete success you're looking for, you’ll want to connect with an expert private service provider like GPRS. We offer you a comprehensive range of reporting options, from marks on the ground, to a basic field sketch, to a full-blown AutoCAD report that pinpoints buried electrical, water, gas, communication, sewer and storm drain lines. Our report provides you with a permanent utilities location record for future reference.
5 Cost Factors in Your Utility Locating Project
- 1. Your utility locating objective. Is it simple or complex?
- 2. The type and quantity of utilities being located, such as water, power and gas lines; sanitary and storm sewers; and other critical subsurface utilities.
- 3. The size of the area that is to be inspected. The larger the area that requires utility scanning, the greater the potential impact on cost.
- 4. The scope of the project. Simple painting/flagging utility locations is at one end of the cost spectrum while requesting detailed AutoCAD reports of our findings is at the other, more costly end. Other options include field sketches and Google Earth imaging.
- 5. Site access. If there are limitations and restrictions to when we can access the project site in terms of days and times, it will impact the cost of the project.
Utility Locating safety & injury prevention
Safety and injury prevention are top priorities at GPRS, as it is for our many clients. It’s at the core of all of our services.
Our utility locating services can locate electric, gas, oil, steam, communications, water, sewer, and storm lines. By locating these utilities, we help utility contractors and other construction workers avoid accidental strikes, and because of this, our services help to keep job sites safe.
Injury prevention is critical not only for employee safety but to keep projects running on time and on budget. Our project managers are rigidly schooled in all aspects of project safety prior to being certified for field duty. They also are required to take monthly refresher courses to stay current on all safety developments.
5 Frequently Asked Questions About GPR and Utility Locating
1. WHAT IS GROUND PENETRATING RADAR (GPR)?
Ground penetrating radar is a detection method which uses radio waves to identify buried or hidden components within a structure or beneath a surface. This non-destructive method uses antennas of varying strengths to transmit a signal into a surface. As the signal encounters different components within that surface, it is bounced back to a receiver at the surface. This action creates a reading which can be reviewed by experienced GPRS Project Managers in order to determine the location of utilities and other buried items.
2. HOW IS GPR USED?
Ground penetrating radar is used to identify the location of objects beneath the surface. GPRS uses this radar for utility locating and concrete scanning applications. Varying antenna strengths are used for different applications, depending on the type of material being scanned and how far down we can expect to find buried materials.
3. DOES GPR HAVE ANY LIMITATIONS?
GPR is extremely effective at locating subsurface utilities and other materials, however it does have certain limitations. Ground conditions, weather, and type of material being located are just a few of the potential limiting factors. GPRS Project Managers are skilled in determining if GPR is the right choice for you project. In the event that conditions are not suitable for GPR scanning, an alternative recommendation can be made.
4. WHAT TYPE OF GPR EQUIPMENT IS USED?
GPRS uses a variety of ground penetrating radar and scanning tools according to a project’s needs. Our two most commonly used pieces of equipment are the concrete scanning antenna and the utility locating antenna. Read more about the different types of equipment we use here.
5. HOW CAN I DETERMINE IF GPR IS NEEDED FOR MY PROJECT?
Contact GPRS by phone or through our website and a local GPRS representative will be in touch with you as soon as possible. Our representatives and local Project Managers are skilled in assessing local conditions and can help you to figure out how GPR services can meet your needs.
STATE AGENCIES VS PRIVATE UTILITY LOCATORS
We do not compete with state agencies during our utility locating projects, and we believe that it would be irresponsible for anyone to move forward with a project without utilizing a one-call service. But there are distinct differences between our services. Your local 811 One Call System serves as a supplement to GPRS’s more thorough utility examination. 811 One Call services typically will only locate public utilities up to your property’s meter or private connection point.
Private utilities, on the other hand, are the responsibility of the property owner. Remember: These privately and customer-owned utilities account for almost 65% of all buried utilities in the United States.
Will Locate Public Utilities Which Include:
- Water Force Mains and some service lines (typically only on public property like streets and right-of-ways, easements, etc)
- Primary Electric
- Communications (phone, data, Cable TV, Fiber)
- Gas Mains and service lines (only if metallic pipe or tracer wire is used)
- Main Storm and Sanitary Sewer (typically only on public property like streets and right-of-ways, easements, etc.)
PRIVATE UTILITY LOCATORS
Will Locate All Public & PRIVATE Utilities Which Include:
- Water service lines (plastic or metal)
- Secondary electric (site lighting, signage, 480 volt/220/110 conduits)
- Communications (phone data, cable TV, fiber) -Gas lines (plastic or metal)
- Sewer lines (include septic tanks, leach fields, field tile pipe, etc.)
- Misc. utility lines such as oxygen, steam, chilled water lines, nitrogen and other chemical transport type utilities.
Failure to Detect Unknowns Beneath the Surface
GPRS follows the strict guidelines set in place by SIM. SIM stands for Subsurface Investigation Methodology. SIM is a standard operating procedure comprised of two specifications created specifically for subsurface investigations - one for underground utility locating and one for concrete scanning.