“Bored”? Read this!

Posted: February 9, 2012 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Example:  Picture shows a crossbored clay sewer lateral

Often utility companies utilize HDD method or Horizontal Direction Drilling for installing underground utilities like fiber optics, gas lines, power, cable, phone, etc. Usually down a public right of way. (Like between the street and sidewalk). The method is less intrusive than conventional excavation. However any private utilities that are not located prior to drilling (like the vitrified clay sewer lateral pictured) could easily be damaged or destroyed.

Inevitably a crossbore through a sewer lateral would lead to a blockage or sewer back-up. The typical response of most homeowners when they have a sewer back-up of course, is to call a plumber or rooter company. The problem though, is if the plumber runs a large snake with blades down the sewer line trying to clear a blockage; there’s a danger of cutting into the gas line or other utility. Ultimately the two biggest problems are the homeowner that wasn’t aware of their damaged sewer and the utility company that suffers expensive damage to their utilities. Worse case scenario disaster would be a natural gas explosion. Either way, the utility company would be responsible to the homeowner to cover the cost of repair. The easy way to avoid all of this would be to simply locate the private sewer lateral prior to performing any kind of excavation, boring, drilling, etc.

I found a similar crossbored connection at a private single family residence on Fairway Drive in the Fairway Forest neighborhood of Coeur d’Alene.  The local utility company responsible for the damage was quick and responsive in correcting the problem and reimbursed the homeowner for repairs and damage caused by the back-up and damage to their sewer lateral.  Keep this information in mind if you live in; or plan to purchase property near the Coeur d’Alene Public Golf Course.

Example:  Explosion from natural gas crossbore

Lateral Concepts, LLC is a locally owned and operated business in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. We provide unbiased sewer lateral video inspections and locates in and around North Idaho and Eastern Washington. For more information, you may contact us at: 208.818.8241

  1. laruemimi1 says:

    Wow! I can’t believe utility companies do things so blindly like this! It seems irresponsible to me. A homeowner is required to get locates done; why aren’t they?

    • You’re right. It is required by law to call 811 prior to digging. It’s a free call. Whether you’re simply planting a tree or have a major excavation project planned; not only is it the law, it’s just a smart to do. That goes for homeowners as well as utility companies and government municipalities. National 811 service however, does NOT locate “private” utilities. It is the responsibility of the contractor or homeowner to know and consider what other private utilities may be underground. In that case, they would need to contact a private locating company to locate sewer/septic lines, etc.

  2. […] the winter we discussed the term “crossbore” in which utility companies inadvertently drill natural gas, fiber optics, power, and other […]

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