Locating Existing Utilities in Advance of Directional Bore

We at Ground Penetrating Radar Systems, Inc. were recently called out to a sprawling jobsite in central Florida to locate existing utilities in advance of directional bore.  Four separate borings were planned by our customer to run several electrical conduit lines throughout the property.  Unlike laying new utilities in a trench, a directional bore drills through the ground with no visual confirmation of existing utilities that are being passed over or under by the bore.  That is where GPRS comes in.  Using both our 400MHz radar antenna and our RD8100 Radio detection wand, we scanned the entire area along the proposed route of the directional bores.  These tools allow our technicians to determine both the location and the depth of any utilities the bore path might cross.  Accurate depth detection is crucial for directional boring jobs, because it allows our customers to determine the depth of the bore at every point along their proposed path, allowing them to avoid hitting existing utilities.

On this particular job, the depth of existing utilities rose and fell constantly due to the uneven and constantly changing terrain.  The versatility of the cart used to house our 400MHz antenna was well suited for this task.  We were able to orient the radar over existing lines as mounds of dirt rose and fell along the scope of the scan.  Being able to pinpoint these depths gave our customer the information needed to plan their directional borings.  The path including the sloping terrain mentioned above, as well as multiple street crossings, including an intersection.  Street lighting, water lines, sanitary lines, communication lines, and gas lines were all found and marked per the customer’s request.  Utilities that were expected, as well as some that were completely unanticipated were located and mapped.  The sheer number of existing utilities under the property were a testament to the value of quality GPR work in such situations.

Hitting existing utilities can be dangerous and costly, and we at GPRS pride ourselves in providing the best information possible to our customers prior to digging, trenching, boring, coring, or any other needs that require subsurface locating.

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