The CGA 811 Excavation Safety Conference & Expo is a great place to gain knowledge in the damage prevention industry. Featuring the best speakers in the industry, you will learn something you can bring back to your company to improve your processes and help keep people safe. We’d like to take the opportunity to recognize some of the speakers and sessions from last year’s event that emerged as leaders among all our considerable educational content. These sessions and speakers were chosen by delegates as the best* among an exemplary crowd.
Top Rated Overall Session
Board Orientation: Are You on Board?
Nancy Davis, Trainer and Facilitator,
Owner, Davis Planning & Consulting, LLC
This roundtable discussed best practices for on-boarding a new member. Does your board have planned orientation for your new Directors or Trustees? What are some of your best practices? What are some areas you’d like to shore up to ensure your new board members are equipped to handle their responsibilities?
Eugene Ng, Cyber Security Leader, MNP
Security expert Eugene Ng showed the audience, in real time, how easily a breach can happen. Through various cases, Ng also demonstrated how organizations can build a culture of deterrence and vigilance, regardless of the industry they are in. A must-attend for any attendees interested in understanding how a culture of security helps reduce risk.
Buried Alive: A Survivor’s Story
Joe Tantarelli, Safety Consultant and Speaker, Safestart
Joe recalled the day he was installing pipe in a trench and it suddenly collapsed on him. As doctors worked to save his life and help him recover from his injuries, Joe was left to wrestle with why this horrific incident happened. Rushing, frustration, fatigue, and complacency contributed to making serious mistakes which nearly led to Joe being buried alive. Joe looked at the physical and emotional effects on the person injured, family, friends, co-workers and a company’s safety culture.
Top Rated Speaker
Believe in Safety: Know the Risks of Short Cuts
Brandon Schroeder, President, Believe in Safety
Everyone makes decisions about safety and many of them in an instant. The wrong safety habits make it easier to make wrong decisions that are impossible to undo. Brandon Schroeder survived an arc flash explosion that should have killed him. He recounted the tragedy and discussed the contributing factors and how it all could have been avoided. Brandon discussed the small decisions that happen every day on the job site and how his decisions affected him and everyone around him. This presentation left attendees with a stronger understanding and respect for doing the job correctly and safely.
Preventing Electric Utility Damage
Kelley Heinz, Senior Claims Case Manager/Damage Prevention Manager, ComEd
This presentation highlighted what ComEd, a utility owner, is doing to prevent damages to their facilities. Kelley shared a background on how the Damage Prevention team was formed, what they do, and the effects of electric damage and electric contact both from the excavator and the utility standpoint.
San Gunawardana, CEO, Enview
Dr. San Gunawardana and Aaron Rezendez discussed specific examples of how LiDAR and 3D Geospatial Analytics have assisted PG&E’s damage prevention efforts. PG&E has deployed LiDAR analytics on their entire gas transmission network of approximately 7,000 miles. During the session, the speakers briefly defined LiDAR and 3D Geospatial Analytics and spent most of the session on several real-life examples. Examples included: identification of geohazards (e.g., landslides, soil erosion, river-bank erosion), 3rd party activities (e.g., excavation, construction, movement of earth, encroachments), and detection of pipeline markers.
“EVERYONE MAKES DECISIONS ABOUT SAFETY AND MANY OF THEM IN AN IN – STANT . THE WRONG SAFETY HABITS MAKE IT EASIER TO MAKE WRONG DECISIONS THAT ARE IMPOSSIBLE TO UNDO .”
Underground Safety Summit: Private Utility Locates
Ron Peterson, Executive Director, Nulca
Mark Mason, President and CEO, Blood Hound, LLC
Tim Story, Principal Partner & COO at Safe Site Utility Services
Harley Hartman, Sr. VP of Operations, ELM Utility Services
Richard Fling, Utility Locator Product Manager, Subsite Electronics
Ron Peterson moderated a panel of industry leaders as they addressed major issues within the locate industry and explored potential solutions for these concerns. Topics included: 1) “One Call Center” implies that a single call will result in all utility lines being located. In many cases, this is not the case. 2) Developing a national definition for “private utility line” that all the industry will embrace. 3) Educating the public on private utilities and how to contact a private locator. 4) Whose responsibility is it to have private utilities located?
Safety-First Culture: A Construction Accident Survivor’s Remarkable Journey
Cliff Meidl, Motivational Safety Speaker, Spokesperson and 811 Ambassador, Cliff Meidl Enterprises
Cliff Meidl is an 811 ambassador and spokesperson for One Calls of America and the OSHA Training Institute at CSUDH. In this session, he shared his remarkable story of overcoming a near-death electrical accident and going on to become a two-time Olympic athlete.
Update on Revision of API RP 1162, Public Awareness Programs for Pipeline Operators
Terri Larson, Principal, Larson Communications & Consulting
Deanna Centurion, Principal, Cyera Strategies
Tracy Bryant, Manager, Damage Prevention & PA, Vectren Energy Delivery
Christie Murray, Director of Program Development, PHMSA
If these topics could help you increase your industry knowledge and advance your career, then you belong at the CGA 811 Excavation Safety Conference & Expo! With content addressing the issues and concerns of each industry track, there is something for everyone. Learn more at
CGAconference.com. Register now for best pricing.
Only sessions with a minimum of 10% return rate on voluntary surveys were ranked.