New Report Grades Each State’s Damage Prevention Laws14 Oct 2020, Posted in All Posts, Blog Posts, Press Releases
Washington D.C, – October 14, 2020 – The Alliance for Innovation and Infrastructure (Aii) today released a new report for state legislatures, regulatory bodies, and damage prevention professionals: 2020 Damage Prevention Report Card. This comprehensive analysis of every state’s damage prevention laws and regulations tracks progress over time in key areas.
Four years after the first report card, Aii finds that only minimal progress has occurred despite general technological advancement and accessibility.
“The technology needed for more effective damage prevention exists today and is inexpensive, reliable, and ubiquitous – but many states are not incorporating the technology imbedded in the basic tools of modern life (e.g. cell phones and tablets) into their damage prevention laws.”
The report card rates state damage prevention laws in three key areas: Positive Response, Shareability, and Quality Control. These are drawn from a Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration (PHMSA) report to Congress on improved technology for damage prevention efforts.
The report card finds that fewer than half of states have sufficient positive response requirements in law that effectively close the communication loop between the facility operator and the excavator prior to breaking ground.
Only 13 states were found to have sufficient shareability requirements in law that allows all relevant parties to access information electronically about the ticket status, excavation site, and underground facility location.
Finally, only one state has updated its laws to mandate a sufficient quality control measure, with six states demonstrating progress.
Despite the lack of progress in updating laws and regulations, the report card also highlights the voluntary programs implemented by state One-Call centers and private actors. Every state offers online ticket entry, and most allow electronic ticket status tracking. While not enforceable, this use of technology undoubtedly has the potential to help reduce miscommunication that often leads to high costs, injuries, and deaths.
This report card is not intended to be used as a tool for criticizing state programs. Its purpose instead is to shine a light on states that are moving in the right direction and to draw attention to areas where states could improve their laws, regulations, and practices.
Click here to read the report card.
Click here to for more report card resources.