Industry non-profits create Damage Prevention Institute to reduce rate of damage to buried infrastructure
The Gold Shovel Association (GSA), a nonprofit association focused on continuously improving safety by providing meaningful damage prevention certifications and standardized performance metrics, will join the Common Ground Alliance (CGA), a nonprofit trade association dedicated to protecting underground utility lines, people who dig near them, and their communities. This new arm of CGA will be called the Damage Prevention Institute.
The Damage Prevention Institute's mission is to consolidate the data and resources of CGA and GSA to generate powerful insights and efficiencies that will reduce the rate of damage to buried infrastructure. Building on CGA's Best Practices and foundational DIRT (damage information reporting tool) data, as well as GSA's metrics development, the Damage Prevention Institute will be structured around a metrics-focused, peer review-based model of shared responsibility.
"We believe CGA's new Damage Prevention Institute is a gamechanger for the industry, and we are pleased that the Gold Shovel Association shares our vision in this effort," said Sarah K. Magruder Lyle, CGA president and CEO. "By focusing on shared responsibility through a peer-review process, and consolidating data and metrics to establish industry-wide benchmarks, the Damage Prevention Institute will increase engagement from all stakeholders and help us get a much clearer picture of the system's inefficiencies and how we can address them."
"The Damage Prevention Institute's focus on data-gathering across the industry is a natural extension of the GSA's work establishing excavation and pre-excavation metrics," said Cheryl Campbell, vice chair of the Gold Shovel Association board of directors. "We are very excited to integrate these metrics with CGA's decades of research . . .. The Damage Prevention Institute will have the insights to truly move the needle on reducing damages across the U.S."
The Damage Prevention Institute will be governed by an Advisory Committee that will include members of both CGA's and GSA's boards of directors. The Institute's focus will be on metrics development – including excavation and pre-excavation metrics – and establishing a multi-stakeholder, peer-reviewed accreditation process. The peer-review component will facilitate all stakeholders increasing engagement and embracing their critical roles in the damage prevention process.
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