HGS E & E - Is There Anything Dangerous Down There? Mitigating the Dangers of Digging, Trenching, and Drilling.

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Wednesday, September 11, 2019 
Black Lab Pub, Churchill Room • 4100 Montrose Blvd.
Social 5:30 p.m., Dinner 6:30 p.m., Presentation 7:30- 9:00 p.m.

Cost: $30 Pre-registered members; $35 non-members & ALL walk-ups
$15 Emeritus/Life/Honorary; HGS Students Members: FREE
To guarantee a seat, you must pre-register on the HGS website and pay with a credit card.  You may walk up and pay at the door if extra seats are available.  Please cancel by phone or email within 24 hours before the event for a refund. Online & pre-registration closes Wednesday, September 11, at 5:00 a.m.

Speaker: Troy Meinen
Company: ERM

Is There Anything Dangerous Down There?  Mitigating the Dangers of Digging, Trenching, and Drilling.

All too often the news is filled with stories of evacuations, flooding, and in many cases injuries or death as the result of damage to underground lines.   Whether digging with hand tools or machines, trenching, drilling borings, or simply cutting concrete, it is very easy to damage underground lines.  Sometimes the consequences to striking underground lines are an inconvenience, such as in a recent event where a project team conducting hand-dug pits for an archeological study unintentionally punctured an HDPE water line interrupting the water supply to an agricultural field.   Many times, however, the consequences are much more severe as evidenced by recent examples of gas line explosions and electrical burns resulting from damage or impact to underground lines.


A robust pre-planning exercise before digging can greatly minimize the risk of hitting or damaging underground lines.  Elements of planning should include, at a minimum, one-call notification, a review of known information about a location, visual surveys, and conversations with knowledgeable people.   Prior to selecting locations, technology can be used to trace known lines, and in many cases, assess potential obstructions in the ground.  Finally, non-destructive excavation methods can greatly reduce the potential to damage underground lines.


This presentation will review industry practices for preplanning ground disturbance activities, as well as the pros and cons of many non-intrusive technologies for tracing or locating lines.  In addition, alternative technologies for physically uncovering lines or safely conducting excavations will be discussed.



Troy Meinen is a Technical Director and Global Health and Safety Advisor with ERM in Houston.  Over his 20-year career, he has worked on a wide variety of industrial facilities and upstream oil and gas projects to address contaminated groundwater, soil and sediment issues.  His background includes managing investigation and remediation of upstream oil and gas sites and assisting with due diligence for large oil and gas acreage position transactions for major Oil and Gas clients, which includes assessment of water use and protection, property transaction support, environmental impact assessment, environmental permitting and management, and Stakeholder concerns.  He currently utilizes his field experience to support teams globally in improving health and safety performance in key ERM accounts.



September 11th, 2019 5:30 PM   through   9:00 PM
The Black Lab Pub
4100 Montrose Blvd #8 Houston, TX 77006
Houston, TX TX 77006
United States
Phone: 713-529-1199
Event Fee(s)
HGS Member $ 30.00
Non-Member $ 35.00
Emeritus/Life/Honorary $ 15.00
Student $ 0.00
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Event Contact
Contact Matthew Cowan
Contact Phone (713) 777-0534
contact Email mrcowan1@hal-pc.org

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Event Owner Environmental & Engineering
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