Case Study

Southern Company Gas Damage Prevention

Southern Company Gas

Location: Atlanta, GA

Urbint Lens Used: Damage Prevention

About Southern Company Gas

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

Goals

Reduce Southern’s damage rate per 1K tickets in their Chattanooga service territory using the same number of damage prevention resources.

The Problem

Across its four operating companies, Southern Company handles over 2 million excavation tickets each year. Each ticket poses a unique threat to Southern's assets from excavation damage and hit-ins. In addition to this, Southern Company experiences a varying volume of excavation damages occurring on digs without an accompanying 811 ticket.

Excavation 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

Empower Southern Company to reduce damages by increasing locate accuracy, intervening on riskier excavations, and understanding where no call-in excavations are likely to occur.

By combining Southern Company's internal infrastructure data with hundreds of risk variables like work type, contractor past history, and weather information, Urbint generates risk rankings to identify excavation sites that are most damage prone, as well as the likelihood of individual locate requests being mismarked.

To assist with no call-in excavation reduction, Urbint leveraged permit data to identify permits not linked to an excavation ticket. Using natural language processing, Urbint was also able to identify habitual no call-in offenders.

Results

Urbint Lens for Damage Prevention 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 increase the efficiency of their current damage prevention team and drive down excavation 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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