Subsurface Utility Engineering Services
Reducing Conflicts during Construction
Conflicts with utility services are common and costly obstacles encountered during the
construction process. In addition to increased costs and extra claims, these conflicts
can result in excessive construction delays, disruptions in residential, industrial and
commercial utility services, and safety hazards caused by exposure to dangerous
utility gasses and electrical currents.
Subsurface Utility Engineering (S.U.E.) is a process that incorporates new and existing technologies to locate and map underground utilities in the early phases of
construction projects. This methodology can substantially reduce project cost
overruns caused by unforeseen construction conflicts with existing utility installations.
More than a privatized MISS DIG service that provides necessary clearances only at
particular locations, S.U.E. is an integrated engineering design service developed to
locate and map entire utility networks, whether in public rights-of-way or beyond. It
provides design professionals with the reliable utility data required for infrastructure
renovation and improvement projects. S.U.E. methodology also provides a cost effective means of updating and consolidating “as-built” utility drawings for municipalities, universities, hospitals and industrial facilities.
NTH professionals are adept at performing S.U.E. services. Working in conjunction
with project design personnel, we accurately locate existing utilities and identify areas
of potential conflict well in advance of final design and the distribution of construction
Preceding the implementation of the S.U.E. process, the NTH team conducts thorough research and prepares to collect and review existing utility data. We perform a preliminary reconnaissance of the work area and secure the necessary permits.
Finally, we plan for effective project safety and traffic control as well as the orderly
progression of work.
We begin the S.U.E. process by using state-of-the-art geophysical prospecting
methods to confirm the presence of existing utilities and determine their approximate
horizontal alignments. Our professionals then use non-destructive vacuum excavation
techniques at critical points along the utility paths to physically expose the utility and
measure its precise three-dimensional location. We then use digitized surveying
equipment and computer-aided drafting software to map utility locations in a format
that can be integrated into design drawings.