Monthly Update - January 2021

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Thank you for your continued partnership in damage prevention   

Author: Sarah Magruder Lyle, CGA President and CEO

As the year draws to a close/we look back on 2020, I want to extend my gratitude to each of you for your continued partnership in damage prevention. Despite the unprecedented challenges of 2020, CGA members have never wavered in their commitment to protecting buried infrastructure and the communities they serve.

Thank you to our committee co-chairs, task team leaders and dedicated members, who quickly embraced CGA’s new Engage platform and virtual meeting formats to make this one of our most productive years on record. From the release of the third annual Technology Report, to the revamped and more-actionable-than-ever 2019 DIRT Report, to the adoption of meaningful new Best Practices published in the 17.0 edition, along with enhanced messaging and use of digital outreach for National Safe Digging Month and 8/11 Day campaigns, your work and dedication have been impressive. There is no question, your diligence has made an impact: 811 awareness reached an all-time high, as measured by this year’s public awareness research.

On behalf of the CGA staff, I would like to wish you a very happy and safe holiday season, and we look forward to celebrating the 20th anniversary of CGA with all of you at the 2021 CGA Conference & Expo, set for Oct. 12-15 in Orlando, Florida.


CGA welcomes nearly 40 new members in 2020   

Author: Khrysanne Kerr, VP of Marketing and Research   

2020 witnessed tremendous growth for CGA as we are excited to announce that 39 new members joined our association! Committed to our mission, and active in damage prevention these companies play a vital role in our goal of reaching zero damages.

Many of these new Members are participating in our committees and webinars and exhibiting at the 2021 CGA Conference & Expo that will be held Oct. 12-15, 2021 in Orlando, Florida.

Please help in welcoming the following organizations to CGA:

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Educational sessions from Indiana 811 and Kentucky 811’s damage prevention conference available online

Author: Mary Patricia Kindt, Indiana 811 and Kentucky 811

The 2020 Virtual Midwest Damage Prevention Training Conference, hosted by Indiana 811 and Kentucky 811, brought together nearly 500 midwestern damage prevention industry stakeholders for a full day of online education and training. The free conference offered 15 unique sessions throughout the day, pertaining to the interests of excavators, utility members, emergency responders, utility line locators, government officials and more. Session topics varied from an introduction to Exactix, Indiana 811 and Kentucky 811’s soon-to-be-implemented ticketing software, to how to manage stress on and off the job and an overview of state digging laws.

To learn more about what the 2020 Virtual MWDPTC and to view education sessions from the event, click here.

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CGA to host member resources webinar Jan. 13 – register now!  

Author: Erika Lee, CGA Vice President

CGA will host a Member Resources Webinar on Wednesday, Jan. 13 to provide an overview of the many great member resources and tools available on our website. From helpful toolkits to case studies, data reports to white papers, the CGA website contains a wealth of educational information and materials for members. In addition, we’ll highlight some of the unique and effective damage prevention efforts conducted by CGA members.

Click here to register for the upcoming webinar. We look forward to kicking off a new year of damage prevention efforts with you.


Data & Technology Data & Technology Icon

Avoid these DIRT mistakes    

Author: Steve Blaney, DIRT Program Manager

The start of a new year is typically the time to review the past 12 months and get organized for the coming year. Near the top of all DIRT user lists is loading DIRT data. The following are some mistakes we occasionally find in the data that are likely based on confusion or misunderstandings:

Mistake: Entering above-ground or non-excavation events as underground damages

The annual DIRT reports and dashboards focus on excavation-related underground damages. CGA also collects and analyzes underground near miss data. DIRT also accepts reports on above-grade and other “non-excavation” damages, but these are offered for users who want to use DIRT as their internal record-keeping system. If you do not use DIRT in this manner, please leave out reports for events such as: car hit meter or pole, lawnmower broke valve, dump truck snagged overhead wires, etc. If you do use DIRT this way, be sure to select the appropriate Type of Event.

Mistake: Leaving City and Address fields blank

DIRT allows these fields to be blank because not all events occur in an incorporated town, city, or village, and not always at or near a building or property with an address. However, this practice complicates efforts to identify multiple reports of the same event. It can lead to false positive matches because the algorithms end up comparing blank against blank for these fields and treat it as a match. The practice can also cause actual matches to be missed if one party enters the information and another party leaves it blank. If you do have the information, please enter it rather than leave it blank just because it is allowed.

MistakeImproper use of “Call Center Error” root cause

This root cause is intended for errors at or by the one call center, such as not correctly entering the work site on the ticket. It is not for errors by excavators with respect to their 811 notification, such as providing wrong information or not making notification at all.  For those situations, please choose one of these options:

Mistake:  Improper use of Liquid Pipeline as Source of Event Information

Reports have been entered in DIRT with water as the facility damaged and liquid pipeline as the event source. On closer review we find the submitter is a water provider. Water is a liquid, but the Liquid Pipeline event source is intended for companies that transport hazardous products like oil or propane.  Private Water or Public Works should usually be the event source for water facility damages.

For questions about the DIRT Report, email Steven Blaney.

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Join CGA for Night of Networking event

Author: Khrysanne Kerr, VP of Marketing and Research  

Join us for the biggest night of the year in damage prevention! The CGA Night of Networking Celebrating CGA’s 20th Anniversary will take place poolside during the 2021 CGA Conference & Exhibit on Thursday, Oct. 14 at the Orlando Renaissance Sea World.

 The focus of the event will be networking opportunities among CGA members, as well recognizing sponsors and partners. Throughout the night, key damage prevention initiatives will be highlighted, and attendees will have the opportunity to win prizes.

 Admission is included with full conference registration. For more information, email Khrysanne Kerr.

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