July 7, 2019
DBYD’s Infrastructure Damage Reporting System (IDRS)

Dial Before You Dig has developed a data collection and reporting tool, the Infrastructure Damage Reporting System (IDRS), which is designed to build a comprehensive picture in relation to damage incidents associated with excavation activities nationally.

Since its inception in 2013, over 125,000 incidents have been reported across the telecommunications, power, water and gas sectors. This is now providing valuable insights into the nature and causes of incidents where infrastructure is damaged.

The IDRS is populated by Dial Before You Dig asset owning Members, providing accurate and comprehensive data for reporting information about damages that occur to their assets. It is simple to use and the analysed results are presented in a comprehensive, customisable, on-demand report which allows Members to better understand where, how and why these damages are occurring.

Secure and Confidential

The IDRS is set up to ensure Members’ data is kept confidential on secure Australian hosted servers, allowing them to view their respective data securely with the ability to compare it against national trends. It enables asset damage data to be viewed within a broader context (e.g. individual incidents can be evaluated against trends over time and wider regional views), resulting in more meaningful insights and conclusions.

Education and Damage Reduction

Not only has the IDRS aided the understanding of what is happening to assets, it has been a valuable tool for utilities and asset owners in their damage reduction initiatives, including:

  • Highlighting specific areas for damage prevention stakeholders to focus their limited resources to achieve the greatest results;
  • Awareness sessions, education and training targeted to specific groups;
  • Increasing requests for location services by local contractors and excavators;
  • Improving the identification of underground assets among locating professionals through best practices education and training;
  • Improving safe excavation practices.

Today, the IDRS is used to collate and report on both underground and above ground asset incidents and enables users to analyse the cause of these incidents. Dial Before You Dig and its Members can use these results to drive improvements in their operations and develop programs that will help avoid future incidents.

Any damage to an infrastructure service provider’s asset has an impact on the community whether it is power, gas, telecommunications, water, etc. Damages can have safety, economic and environmental impacts for all concerned; preventing one incident from occurring can in many situations prevent injury or fatal outcomes.

As the volume of historical data increases over time, the benefits to the community and the economy through fewer disruptions to vital services will continue to grow. Being able to quantify the impact of asset damage incidents and finding ways to reduce these disruptions is the true value of this tool to the Australian economy. The full article on Dial Before You Dig’s Infrastructure Damage Reporting System including the case studies can found in the 2018 August edition of the Utility Magazine.