Case Study

Damage Prevention

Southern Company Gas

Location: Atlanta, GA

Urbint Lens Used: Damage Prevention

About Company

Southern Company is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia. It serves over 4 million natural gas retail customers across utilities in four states- Illinois, Georgia, Virginia and Tennessee.


By leveraging Urbint Lens for Damage Prevention, Southern Company was seeking to identify tickets most likely to lead to excavation damages. Urbint's risk scores empowered Southern's Damage Prevention Specialists to preemptively intervene on risky tickets and substantially drive-down third party damages. Urbint's locate error score also allowed Southern to identify tickets most likely to fail locate audits. Furthermore, by leveraging permit data, Southern Company wanted to identify suspected No-Call excavation sites and continuously search for suspected habitual no-call offenders.

Altogether, the driving goal was to quantify expected reduction damages based on different resource allocation scenarios.

The Problem

Excavators notify Southern Company about their intention to excavate around nearby gas distribution facilities. Southern Company across its four operating companies handles over 2 million excavation tickets annually. Each ticket poses a unique threat to Southern's assets from excavation damage and hit-ins. Third-party damages present a public safety risk due to the risk of explosion, leaks, physical asset degradation and is a source of consequential repair costs for Southern Company.

The Solution

By combining Southern Company's internal infrastructure data with hundreds of risk variables like work type, contractor past history, and weather information, Urbint generates a probabilistic risk ranking of each individual locate requests to identify excavation sites that are most damage-prone. Our solution empowers Southern Company to proactively intervene on risky excavation sites before damages actually occur. This enables Southern Company to more efficiently allocate existing resources to highest risk tickets.


Using Urbint Lens for Damage Prevention, Southern Company identified almost 50% of damages in just 5% of the overall ticket population. By taking preemptive actions on these risky tickets, Southern Company was able to drive down third-party damages by over 30% in selected service areas.

Compared to historical pass/fail locate audit rates, Urbint doubled the identification rate of audit-failing locate tickets, and additionally identified that 20% of No-Call damages could be traced back to an identifiable building permit. Urbint also produced a list of historical no-call offenders across Southern's service territories enabling damage prevention specialists to optimize safe digging awareness campaigns.

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