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Damage Prevention Committee

logo MD/DC Damage Prevention Committee (DPC)

Kevin Woolbright, Chairman, Mark Hamrick, Vice Chairman & Dora Parks, Secretary
7223 Parkway Drive, Suite 100
Hanover, MD 21076

Minutes of the meeting held on September 22, 2015
Prepared by Emily Meier (MGH)

Vice Chairman Mark Hamrick called the regular monthly meeting to order at 9:30 am followed by the customary introductions. There were 36 attendees at the meeting.

The minutes of August 25, 2015 were approved as written, but Tom Hastings (One Call Concepts Locating Services) clarified that on page two of the minutes in the Maryland Underground Facilities Damage Prevention Authority section, it should be explained that the locating companies will provide a recommendation for the open locator seat on the Authority Board. That recommendation then goes to the Damage Prevention Committee, and finally it is provided to the governor for appointment.

None reported.

Will Gooch (Decisive Communications) reported that he has been experiencing issues with Broadstripe, a local cable TV provider based in Anne Arundel County. Broadstripe is not responding to tickets, and Will has been unable to get in touch with anyone at the company's office. Steve Danko (Absolute Underground) stated that he has experienced the same issue for the past few years. Mark Hamrick (Verizon) recommended that anyone experiencing this issue should bring it to the attention of the Maryland Underground Facilities Damage Prevention Authority so that Jim Barron (ED, Maryland Authority) can investigate it or reach out to the Anne Arundel Cable Commissioner, John Lyons.

Mitzi Ambush (PEPCO) voiced concerns regarding excavators digging across transmission lines. Mitzi stated that PEPCO's pipelines are surrounded by a special thermal sand to insulate them, and contractors and subcontractors have been removing that sand during excavation and replacing it with other materials, which causes the pipes to erode, resulting in costly leaks. These pipes are labeled with "PTL." Mitzi stated that locators, including DCI and UtiliQuest, have been helpful with this issue and have been letting PEPCO know when a PTL is in conflict. If an excavator comes across one of these pipes, they should call PEPCO at the number provided on their ticket for further instruction.

Iris Curtis (SMECO) inquired about required depths for burying cable lines. Mark Hamrick explained that Maryland law does not stipulate a specific depth. Some counties, however, do require a specific depth. The actual depth at which cable lines are buried also depends on how they are installed by the contractor.

Dana Maye (Maryland State Highway Administration) informed the committee that the SHA has been tasked with several upcoming projects that need to be completed within a tight timeline. He asked if there is a way to expedite the process to have underground utility lines in the areas of their projects marked, other than by requesting Emergency Tickets. Mark Hamrick explained that SHA can use Short Notice Tickets to try to hasten the process, but that utility owners are not required to have locators mark their lines in a short amount of time, and SHA will still need to wait until all lines have been marked or "cleared" before starting work. Additional recommendations include calling in tickets as far in advance as possible, as there is no longer a maximum of 10 days in advance; setting up a meeting with locators; using Code 5 Work in Progress Tickets; white lining and staking the work area; providing maps for locators; and putting as few locations as possible on one ticket. Mark also mentioned that allowing excavators to pinpoint their work area by marking stakes on the map in ITIC is one of the improvements being made to the system.

NPL provided a presentation for the committee that focused on safety practices for using excavation equipment, such as backhoes. Backhoes have what's called the "Redzone," which is the area within the swing radius of a backhoe's bucket where employees and the public could be accidentally struck. NPL recommends several safety steps when using equipment. The first is holding a morning huddle with employees before every job to go over duties and safety practices. The second is the pre-operation inspection, which includes the operator reading the equipment's safety manual and completing an equipment inspection report after performing a full inspection of the equipment. Cones should be placed around the equipment to mark its swing radius. This area should be avoided by anyone, including other employees (even spotters) and the public, as they could be harmed. While using equipment, the operator's line of sight is often skewed, but they should ensure their sight path is clear. When parked or being loaded, equipment should be stabilized using secure chains at six different points of contact. In urban areas where space is tight, it can be challenging to block off the full swing radius of equipment, but the work area should be closed and marked for pedestrians as much as possible using cones and caution tape.

Scott Brown, WGL-Committee Chairman   Vince Healy, Verizon-Vice Chairman   Dora Parks, Miss Utility/One Call Concepts- Secretary

The next committee meeting is scheduled for October 8th at 9:30 am in Cumberland, MD, and will be hosted by Columbia Gas.

The Subscriber Committee and Board of Directors are active participants with the Maryland Authority regarding Title 12 Law modifications for a future rewrite.

Scott Brown, WGL- Committee Chairman, Meena Gowda, Esq., DC Water-Vice Chairman, Dora Parks, Miss Utility/One Call Concepts-Secretary

The committee did not meet in August but met on September 1st instead. The next meeting is scheduled for October 1st at 9 am at the Miss Utility Call Center. The committee is almost finished with the rewrite draft and plans to have the legislative copy to the District of Columbia Counsel and Mayor later this year.

Meetings, minutes, attendance and draft working copies are available at;   http://www.missutility.net/SteeringCommitteeRewriteDcLaw/index.asp

If you would like to receive committee meeting information, please contact Dora Parks at dora@missutility.net.

Kevin Woolbright, WSSC-Chairman and Jim Barron, Executive Director

The next meeting is scheduled for October 7th at 9 am the Miss Utility Call Center. The hearings will be open to the public, and all stakeholders were encouraged to attend.

Kevin Woolbright, WSSC-Chairman, Dora Parks, Miss Utility-Vice Chairman

The committee reviewed the 19 entries received for the Dig Smart Awards and selected the winners: Comer Construction, Inc. (Maryland Winner); Anchor Construction Corporation (Washington, D.C. Winner); and B. Frank Joy LLC (Excellence Winner). All winners will be recognized during the GCDPTC in Ocean City, MD.

Please visit, http://www.missutility.net/missutilityawards/maryland_awards.asp to learn more about the awards.

Chairman, Matt Ruddo (One Call Concepts)
The 7th annual Greater Chesapeake Damage Prevention Training Conference is being held Oct. 27-30, 2015 at the Clarion Resort Fontainebleau Hotel in Ocean City, MD. Informational brochures are available at the Miss Utility Call Center, and the conference website (www.missutilityconference.com) provides up to date conference information. The conference currently has 286 registered attendees, so attendance is expected to meet or exceed past years. All stakeholders were encouraged to register if they hadn't already done so.

Trade Shows
Emily Meier stated there had been 23 trade show events completed since January 2015, some spanning over several days for the western Maryland and District area. Future shows include:

  • Garrett County Home & Garden Show
  • Garrett County Fairgrounds
    McHenry (Deep Creek Lake), MD
    Sept. 26-27, 2015
    Approximate number of attendees: 1,000-1,250

  • Level Volunteer Fire Company Open House
  • Level Volunteer Fire Company
    Havre de Grace, MD
    Oct. 4, 2015
    Approximate number of attendees: 900

  • Chesapeake Region Safety Council Conference & Expo
  • Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory
    Laurel, MD
    Oct. 7, 2015
    Approximate number of attendees: 300

  • Maryland Home and Garden Show (Fall)
  • Maryland State Fairgrounds
    Timonium, MD
    Oct. 16-18, 2015
    Approximate number of attendees: 20,000

If you are interested in volunteering for any Trade Shows or would like to receive the updated Trade Show emails, please email Emily Meier at emeier@mghus.com.

Damage Prevention and Safety Training
Dora Parks, Miss Utility-Training Coordinator

Past Training Events

  • Childs Landscaping on August 28th – Severna Park
  • Cherry Hill Construction on September 3rd – Jessup
  • Town of Perryville, DPW on September 9th – Perryville
  • Quarterly Training at Miss Utility on September 11th
  • Cherry Hill Construction on September 15th – Jessup

Future Training Events

  • Paradigm – Various locations and dates
  • WMACSA (ASSOC) on October 14th – College Park
  • Quarterly Training at Miss Utility on November 13th
  • Contractor Training (DC) on November 17th – Washington, D.C.

To schedule a FREE Damage Prevention & Safety Training, please contact Dora Parks, Manager of Client Relations at 410-782-2026 or dora@missutility.net.

There being no further business brought before the committee, the meeting adjourned at 10:30 am.

Next MD/DC Damage Prevention Committee Meeting; October 27, 2015 starting at 9:30 am; refreshments are available at 9:00 am at Miss Utility, 7223 Parkway Drive, Suite 100 Hanover, MD 21076.

Monthly meeting minutes and the attendee contact list is available at,


List Sorted By

Absolute Underground Bill Neal (443) 336-7749 billn@absoluteunderground.com
Absolute Underground Steve Danlo (410) 768-2607 steved@absoluteunderground.com
Anchor Construction Wen Liang (202) 269-6694 wliang@anchorconst.com
Anchor Construction Will Metzger (202) 269-6696 wmetzger@anchorconst.com
B. Frank Joy JW Hall (240) 417-0184 halljw@bfjoy.com
BGE Charles McCadden (443) 463-1200 charles.mccadden@bge.com
Bowen & Kron Jeff Ramsburg (410) 925-0538 jeff@bowen-kron.com
Columbia Gas Calvin Swauger (301) 268-9452 clswauger@nisource.com
Comer Construction Dorothy Kuzora (410) 879-6094 dorothy@comerconstruction.com
Concrete General Fred Collins (301) 252-6775 safety@concretegeneral.com
DCI Jay DeCastro (202) 480-4878 jdcastro@dcihq.com
Decisive Will Gooch (240) 586-1605 drops@decisiveinc.net
Gray & Son Kurt Wagner (410) 365-5635 kwagner@graynson.com
Gray & Son Richard Hess (410) 357-3903 rhess@graynson.com
Howard County Cal Brooks (410) 313-4952 cbrooks@howardcountymd.gov
Howard County Wesley Warren (443) 745-2233 wwarren82479@gmail.com
Insight Justin Lilly (571) 422-0047 jlilly@planwithinsight.com
Lambert Cable Splicing Jeff Jones (301) 725-8054 jeff.jones@lambertcable.com
MD PSC Rick Miller (410) 767-8081 richard.miller@md.gov
MGH Chris McMurry (410) 902-5036 cmcmurry@mghus.com
MGH Emily Meier   emeier@mghus.com
NPL Jamila Odom (301) 322-4210 jodom@gonpl.com
NPL Nicolas Cote (443) 829-9052 ncote@gonpl.com
OCC Locating Service Tom Hastings (410) 712-0202 thastings@occls.com
PEPCO Mitzi Ambush (202) 308-2269 ambushm@pepco.com
Pinpint Lawrence Johnson (301) 672-8520 lj@pinpointunderground.com
Priority Construction Dana Morgan (410) 244-6773 clmorgan@priorityconst.com
Pro Comm E.L.S. Charlie Russell (443) 535-3588 charlie@procommels.com
Rutler Project Management Tara Labosky (443) 415-7901 tara@rutterpm.com
SMECO Iris Curtis (301) 705-8689 iris.curtis@smeco.coop
SMECO Lisa Hurley (410) 535-9403 lisa.hurley@smeco.coop
USIC Joe Feronti (443) 239-4402 josephferonti@usicllc.com
Utiliquest Erik Phillips (443) 324-7835 erik.phillips@utiliquest.com
VA 811 Leslie Fannon (703) 994-5177 lfannon@va811.com
Washington Gas Don Jones (703) 750-5510 djones@washgas.com
WSSC Deena Joyce (301) 206-8259 djoyce@wsscwater.com
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