NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search
Accident prevention through equipment-mounted buried utility detection.
Trends and current best practices in construction safety and health. Hinze J, ed. Gainesville, FL: IeJC, 2005 Aug; :1-11
The demand for new buried utilities is growing with new construction, re-construction, and the growth of the subsurface infrastructure worldwide. As a result, contractors are busy digging and drilling into the ground in order to bury new pipes. Because the machinery for placing the new utilities underground, such as backhoe excavators, trenchers, augers, drills, and plows, cannot sense when they are getting close to already buried objects, utilities are easily damaged, possibly leading to electrocutions or gas explosions. Despite great efforts in locating existing utilities before a contractor is allowed to dig, accidents of all kinds occur in great numbers. This paper will discuss a multi-sensor approach to detecting and locating various kinds of utilities using a combination of electromagnetic induction (EMI) and ground penetrating radar (GPR). While the EMI detects metallic material, the GPR is capable of finding concrete ducts and pipes made of non-ferrous material. The two sensory systems have been integrated into a mobile unit and a system that mounts directly onto a digging machine. This paper will describe the integrated system, describe the sensors, and show how the system was used to successfully support an excavating contractor working on a chilled water distribution system on a university campus.
Occupational-accidents; Accidents; Accident-prevention; Construction; Construction-equipment; Construction-industry; Construction-workers; Electrocutions; Occupational-hazards; Excavation-equipment
Research Tools and Approaches: Control Technology and Personal Protective Equipment
Trends and current best practices in construction safety and health
North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division