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New underground standard launched

The ICE, in collaboration with standards body BSI, has launched the PAS 128 specification for underground utility detection, verification and location.

The new standard was officially launched by ICE President Geoff French earlier this week at the Institution’s One Great George Street HQ in London.

Historically it has been hard to detect, identify and verify the location of utilities. This has put the safety of workers and the public at risk; led to unnecessary work that then has to be aborted; damage to third party assets; and inefficient design solutions.

PAS 128 aims to provide a clear guidance for those engaged in the detection, verification and location of active, abandoned, redundant or unknown utilities. It is aimed at surveyors, geophysicists and subsurface utility engineers, as well as engineers, contractors, project managers and utility owners who are responsible for recording underground utilities information.

“PAS 128 sets out the accuracy to which data capture occurs, the quality of the expected data and a means by which to assess and indicate the confidence that can be placed in it,” said French.

“With time, education and experience of PAS 128, the result could be increased accuracy of detected utilities and associated records, and thus more effective planning and safer execution of street works, civil works, ground works and utility based activities.”

Organisations involved in the development of PAS 128 include the Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors, EuroGPR, Heathrow Airport Holdings, the Highways Agency, National Joint Utilities Group, National Underground Assets Group, Ordnance Survey, the Geological Society, the Survey Association, Transport for London, University of Birmingham and the Utility Mapping Association.

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