What is Subsurface Utility Engineering or SUE for short?

SUE is a form of engineering that entails managing risks associated with utility mapping. The inability to obtain reliable underground utility information continues to be an ongoing problem. Ecotech’s vacuum excavation services play a supporting role in the overall SUE process. The most effective way to map utilities with 100% accuracy is Level A locating to see the underground utilities visually.


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What is Subsurface Utility Engineering or SUE?

Per The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), Subsurface Utility Engineering or SUE for short is a form of engineering that entails managing risks associated with utility mapping. Starting with a work plan outlining the scope of work, schedules, risk, as well as the desired method SUE is used in utility relocation coordination and design, assessments,  estimates, implementation and more.

“Vacuum excavation techniques are employed to expose and record the precise horizontal and vertical position of the assets. This information is then typically presented in CAD format or a GIS-compatible map. A conflict matrix is also created to evaluate and compare collected utility information with project plans, identify conflicts and propose solutions. The concept of SUE is gaining popularity worldwide as a framework to mitigate costs associated with project redesign and construction delays and to avoid risk and liability that can result from damaged underground utilities.”

Read our interview with Bill Steinhart of Rettew Associates on their partnership with Ecotech involving Subsurface Utility Engineering here.

Sources – https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/programadmin/history.cfm


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What is Trenching?

Trenching is one of the most common methods of hydro and air excavation. There are various forms of trenching including slot, perimeter, box, linear, cross and exploratory trenching. Each variation of trenching is specific to the scope of work. Trenches are cut to various dimensions with great accuracy and precision using high-pressure water or air.

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An interview with Bill Steinhart of Rettew Associates on their partnership with Ecotech involving Subsurface Utility Engineering (SUE).

At Ecotech, we believe in building strong long lasting relationships with our clients and partners. We are driven each day by our core values which include Success & Safety of Others, Respectful Communication, Honesty & Hard Work, and a Positive Attitude, and we work laboriously to meet the highest in safety standards as well as reliability for our customers.  Our job is to offer the best service, while also being aware of our client’s individual needs and budgets. Over the years, we have had the pleasure of working with many industry leading companies on a variety of exciting projects, and Rettew is one such company.

We were honored to have Bill Steinhart, Senior Geophysicist of Rettew Associates take time out of his busy schedule to sit down with us to discuss Rettew and its Subsurface Utility Engineering (SUE) services as well as the relationship that has developed between our two companies. Read more

EcoTech, helping keep Universities and Colleges looking great!

Have you ever wondered how the gorgeous grounds of many Universities stay so lovely, even when things below the ground surface might be a little ugly?

Well, even beautiful college campuses are susceptible to busted pipes and other emergencies needing careful excavation around underground pipes while keeping the integrity of the grounds. That’s where EcoTech comes in! Read more

811 Damage Prevention Professional Magazine – Cross Bore Mitigation

Our industry is ever changing and it’s a priority here at EcoTech to stay on top of the latest news and trends. This includes everything from excavation and technology to safety. We do this by participating in educational seminars, attending expos as well as regular utility safety meetings throughout the areas we serve. Industry publications are also valuable assets, one such publication is 811 Damage Prevention Professional Magazine. Cross Bore is our topic for September so we were happy to see that 811 Damage Prevention recently covered Cross Bore Mitigation in their latest issue. Read our recent post on Cross Bore’s here.

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What is a Cross Bore and How Does it Occur?

What is Cross Bore and How Does it Occur?

Per the PA 811 “A cross bore is the intersection of an existing underground utility or underground structure by a second utility installed using trenchless technology. This results in an intersection of the utilities, compromising the integrity of either or both utility or underground structure.”

Trenchless technologies, such as directional drilling are increasingly used in urban areas to install new underground utility lines thus increasing the risk of a cross bore, which in some cases can be very dangerous as well as disruptive. With a thorough understanding of the complexities of cross boring, our expert team at EcoTech can be brought in to help identify and excavate safely and effectively with our hydro or air services thus helping to avoid significant damage to utilities and properties.

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