What Does a Subsurface Utility Engineering Technician Do?
Obtaining reliable information from underground utility has always been inconvenient for USA highway designers. Numerous states have made contracts with consultants to collect utility information necessary for establishing highway plans. Highway designers hire these consultants to secure and manage this level of information during the ongoing course of highway developments. Such practice is called Subsurface Utility Engineering (SUE), where a Subsurface Utility Engineering Technician is partly responsible.
What Is Subsurface Utility Engineering?
Subsurface Utility Engineering is a process that combines a handful of disciplines such as civil engineering, geophysics, and surveying. It makes use of unique technologies to carry out tasks with high efficiency; for example, vacuum excavation, a practice where technicians use high-pressure working fluid (air or water) to control the hole with high precision. Another technology they make use of is geophysics, where you apply the knowledge in physics to obtain data in an underground geographic space.
Its usefulness has made it so handy, that states have been regularly using services of subsurface utility engineering consultants while executing highway projects.
Benefits of Utilizing Subsurface Utility Engineering
The utilization of SUE has benefitted highway project contractors in the following ways:
- Needless relocations got avoided.
- Accurate utility information got supplied to the highway designers even before the execution of the project
- Reduced delays to the project caused by waiting for the completion of a utility work
- Unanticipated utility conflicts got avoided.
- Enhanced safety because the excavation is far from the utilities present in the area.
Responsibilities of a Subsurface Utility Engineering Technician
The tasks SUE field technicians are to do the following functions:
- Operate equipment such as vacuum excavation trucks
- Find various underground utilities
- Create understandable sketches
- Use basic mathematics
- Conduct field measurements
- Log daily activities
- Carry out records research
- Do other duties assigned
- Do a lot of traveling
The SUE field technician is a part of the team that focuses on projects connected to underground utilities, along with engineers, surveyors, and the likes. SUE technicians must be able to lift a significant amount of weight and can walk for a considerable period. Physical mobility is also a requirement, together with the ability to be mindful most of the situation. SUE technicians do a lot of heavy lifting, literally and metaphorically.
The responsibilities that the SUE technicians carry are vital in the operations of a project. Without the data they provide, the whole engineering project will collapse.