As the year draws closer to the end, it is a good time to review what has been achieved and plan for the year ahead. 2019 has been another good year for Dial Before You Dig with strong continued use of the referral service and steady membership growth. As we maintain our efforts to achieve Zero harm, Zero damage for our Members, it is encouraging to see continued strong growth in use of the Dial Before You Dig service. The national enquiry service has grown on average 19% year on year and in 2018/19, more than $2.0 million enquiries were made to Dial Before You Dig, resulting in over 12.0 million referrals for asset location information.
Dial Before You Dig has been progressing a major strategic initiative to develop the Referral Service of the Future. The current referral service has an excellent track record of protecting more than $340 billion of infrastructure, covering more than 740,000 kilometres. The aim of the project is to ensure the next generation referral service is contemporary and effective, is responsive to asset owner and enquirer needs, is continuously developed to add increased value and has a sustainable and affordable business model. The Referral Service of the Future project is progressing to plan.
Dial Before You Dig is pleased to announce that the next Oceania Damage Prevention Conference will be held on the Gold Coast in November 2020. The 2018 inaugural Oceania Damage Prevention Conference was supported by AADBYDS and member entities and proved highly successful with 95% of surveyed delegates rating the conference as excellent or very good and 86% rated the educational benefits of the conference as excellent or very good. Dial Before You Dig is excited to be sponsoring the event again.
Sadly, this year there has been a mixture of strong winds, hot and dry conditions, heat waves, bushfires and floods all within a short period around the country. For some states the onslaught of severe weather condition continues, and the rebuild a slow and steady process. Our thoughts are with the volunteers, family and friends affected by these tragedies. It is also a timely reminder that when the rebuild begins to be aware of the surrounds and recognise any digging or penetrating of the ground has the potential to impact underground services such as electrical cables and plumbing, regardless of the type or depth of activity.
Lastly, on behalf of all the Dial Before You Dig staff, we would like to take this opportunity to thank all our Members and users for their ongoing support over the last 12 months; it has been another extraordinary year. Protecting Australia’s infrastructure is important to all of us and we could not do this without your continued support. We look forward to working with you all again in 2020.