The Use of Utility Locating Services in Hurricane Harvey’s Relief Efforts

September 8, 2017

Texas utility locating
The Use of Utility Locating Services in Hurricane Harvey’s Relief Efforts

Last week, Penhall Technologies had the opportunity to participate in the efforts for those affected by Hurricane Harvey. We performed our services at the NRG Center in Houston, which hosts the largest emergency shelter in the city.

First of all, the FDNY Incident Management Team called our Houston office for utility locating services. The New York Fire Department hired them to set up a 40’ x 100’ tent. This tent would function as the main location to serve meals to truck drivers delivering supplies for the emergency shelter itself. The NRG stadium expected over 250 truck drivers coming into Houston to deliver these supplies.

Before installing the tent, they decided to scan the proposed location for it. This was about 85,000 square feet. The scan would ensure that the client could install the tent safely, without striking any subsurface hazards. The location for the scanning took place in the parking lot.

Two of our local Houston analysts scanned for all utilities under the asphalt. They used Ground Penetrating Radar with the SIR 4000 antenna and electromagnetic detection technology through the use of the RD 7100 wand. Then, they found and marked out two utility lines. These were a sewer line and a power line.

These lines did not present any issues for the client. The analysts advised to stay a minimum of 3 feet away from the marked utilities. Due to this, the client had plenty of room left to drive the tent’s posts into the ground away from the marked lines.

Harvey utility locating

“Being able to help my community here in Houston is beyond rewarding. Helping with the utility locate at NRG makes me feel as if I’m having a direct effect on the city that I grew up in. The fact that I can give back and aid my fellow Houstonians in a time of adversity is indescribable,” said GPR analyst Jacob Paddock.

The FDNY Incident Management Team was pleased with the locating services. Since then, we have performed another locate for them in Rosharon, Texas before the installation of more tents. Their needs change daily. Therefore, they have been in constant contact with Penhall Technologies.

As a team, we are proud that our services played a role in the relief efforts. In addition, Penhall will continue to assist in any efforts that aid Texas’ recovery. To donate to those affected by Hurricane Harvey, click here.


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