Unseen Threats to Texas Critical Infrastructure: The Risk to Buried Utilities and Targeted Policy Solutions to Protect them

Date

2023-10-15

Authors

Dierker, Benjamin

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Publisher

Institute for Homeland Security

Abstract

Excavation damage to underground infrastructure is a nationwide challenge. Ranging from a local nuisance to both lethal and regional crises, the damage and costs from buried facility strikes are almost entirely preventable. Texas is at unique risk because of its concentrated energy infrastructure, its considerable and growing population, and its competitive economy that ensures constant development activity. Each of these factors correlate to excavation damage and help explain why Texas routinely leads the nation in excavation damage incidents that disrupt critical energy and services. Billions of dollars in economic harm, waste, and inefficiency emanate from this issue and ripple throughout the Lone Star State every year. Solutions include systemic implementation of validated technology, adherence to best practices, and public policy reforms proven to reduce this damage to virtually zero – sparing lives, saving dollars, and protecting critical infrastructure.

Description

Keywords

Damage Prevention, Excavation, Pipelines, Utilities, Infrastructure, Natural Gas, One-Call, 811

Citation

Dierker, B. R. (2023) Unseen Threats to Texas Critical Infrastructure: The Risk to Buried Utilities and Targeted Policy Solutions to Protect them. (Report No. IHS/CR-2023-1007). The Sam Houston State University Institute for Homeland Security.