Education Is Part of the Game

Learning lessons from other contractors and engineers could prove beneficial in upcoming jobs for your company.

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The warmer weather is now in sight for many of us as spring quickly approaches. That means work is about to pick up and you’ll be busy all summer.

There’s still time though to fit in some learning for you and your crews, and there’s no better place to do that than at the North American Society for Trenchless Technology’s (NASTT) No-Dig Show this month.

I know, I know. Sitting in a conference room full of people and learning doesn’t sound fun, but hear me out. At this show you get to learn about case studies of jobs that are either in process or completed. You get to find out how these engineers, contractors and municipalities are dealing with the same job site challenges that you are probably going to face yourself this upcoming busy season.

This year’s show, being held March 17-21 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Illinois, will feature six industry track sessions focused on both installation and rehabilitation. Morning and afternoon blocks give attendees the chance to attend several different sessions.

Topics include pipe bursting, tunneling, pipe ramming, cured-in-place pipe, condition assessment and horizontal directional drilling.


The Down & Dirty feature in this issue actually is from a session at the 2017 No-Dig Show. The engineering company, AECOM, was hired to put in new sewer lines in Norfolk, Virginia, and because of historical buildings and other obstacles, it was decided to use HDD on a portion of the install rather than opencut.

The HDD portion went past a historical church and crews went through extra steps to ensure nothing happened to that church during the work.

It took hard work and good communication with city officials to convince them that things would go OK, but the crews were able to accomplish the job and save the city some money.


It’s projects like this that you’ll hear about at No-Dig. Listen to what those presenters are saying. Their solutions to the tough and unique jobs that are being discussed will help you down the road. Whether it’s only a portion of what they told you or the whole thing, you’ll gain valuable insight and might look at some of your upcoming jobs a little differently.

Speaking of listening, it’s important to do that whenever you can. Listen to your employees, co-workers and even your customers.

Troy Peterson, owner of GreenWay Environmental in northern Minnesota, listened to his customers when he started his hydroexcavation company six years ago. They wanted him to be able to work in swampy areas where most trucks can’t go. He listened and gave them what they wanted.

His company now has three hydrovac units that are outfitted with tracks to accommodate swampy areas. It has saved his customers money and has also saved Peterson time on the job, allowing him to take on even more work.

Taking time to listen to people is a necessity. Practice it at the No-Dig Show, and then bring that home to your company and your customers. You’ll be amazed by what it can do for your business.


I’ll be at the No-Dig Show and would welcome a visit from you. You can email me at Or visit us at Booth 834 during the show floor hours each day.

Enjoy this issue!


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