Last year’s annual CGA 811 Excavation Safety Conference & Expo, held March 14-17, 2017
in Orlando, was very well attended. As one of those attendees, I highly recommend that all
professionals in the damage prevention business plan to attend the upcoming Conference in Phoenix, March 6-8, 2018. With back-to-back educational content from Tuesday morning to Thursday afternoon, including sessions, summits, workshops and forums, along with more than 120 exhibitors to visit, the content available will assist you in achieving your goals in damage prevention.
We all share a common goal to build a culture of safety and we are all committed to the idea that damage prevention is a shared responsibility. One recurring theme in 2018 is the idea that all stakeholders must hold themselves, and their teams, accountable and continue to raise the safety bar. Along with summits targeting the issues specific to stakeholders within the Gas & Oil, Telecom, Electric, Water & Sewer, Locate, and Excavator industries, panelists from across Arizona will share their perspectives in the Arizona Damage Prevention Stakeholder Summit.
Taking the time to identify and share how we as an industry can bridge the gap between
an average program and a program that goes above and beyond rules and regulations is an
important step in the right direction. But how do we bridge that gap? How do we keep moving damage prevention forward to maintain our current downward trend in total damages? Panelists selected from industry leaders will address these and other questions and topical issues during the 2018 Summit. These subject matter experts will share their experiences, offer their knowledge and provide their observations on how the industry can continue to work to lower the number of annual incidents.
While excavation practices have drastically improved over the recent past, we as an industry – from utility companies, to regulatory bodies, to designers, to excavators – need to continually improve our safety cultures to reduce risks associated with underground utility activities.
With this primary objective in mind, the Arizona Summit will focus on “lessons learned.”
What have we done that works well? What do we need to focus on in the future?
Maintaining effective stakeholder relationships is a key element when developing
successful and robust damage prevention programs. It’s essential to build safe excavation
awareness through effective outreach programs while ensuring industry compliance
through helpful enforcement. The industry must also continue to invest in safety-improvement cultures. We must focus on developing a mentality of zero incidents to allow the industry to continue to enjoy the current downward trend in damage to facilities below the earth’s surface. And, every state needs a level of enforcement authority in place enhancing successful industry damage prevention programs.
An interactive Q&A will provide attendees with the opportunity to ask questions and share their damage prevention insights. Stakeholders from all industries are invited to join this important industry discussion designed to encourage damage prevention activities and inspire communication.
While the Arizona Damage Prevention Stakeholder Summit is focusing specifically on the
needs and issues facing Arizona stakeholders, the summit is open to all attendees and can bring attention and potential solutions to stakeholders in other states who are faced with the same issues.
Join me this year at the CGA 811 Excavation Safety Conference & Expo. Between the educational opportunities and the multiple networking events that connect you to other like-minded industry professionals who can enhance your experience, this is one event you cannot afford to miss.
Al Field is President of Al Field & Associates, LLC and is actively engaged is raising awareness of damage prevention in Arizona. He can be reached at