Utility Investigation Trends in Texas Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • Detection of utility conflicts as early as possible during the project development process can help to substantially improve the timely relocation of utilities and can allow time to develop alternatives to avoid utility relocation. However, collecting accurate information on the location of underground utilities from utility companies can be challenging. This is one reason that subsurface utility engineering (SUE) has become a critical tool in helping to identify and locate utility installations within the right-of-way. Although the benefits of SUE have been well documented, a disconnect between its full potential and its actual use at the Texas Department of Transportation (DOT) was suspected. A survey of staff in diverse organizational units at the Texas DOT was conducted to learn about current utility investigation practices and to gain a better understanding of how the Texas DOT uses SUE. The team found, among other issues, some unfamiliarity with SUE technology and its best uses, a general need for training and education on the use of SUE, and a recent decline in the use of SUE technology that may be linked to frequent uncertainty about the benefits of SUE.

published proceedings

  • Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board

author list (cited authors)

  • Kraus, E., Obeng-Boampong, K., & Quiroga, C.

publication date

  • January 1, 2012 11:11 AM