Private Utility Locating
Centuries of Experience
Mason's 5-Step Process to Locate your utilities
Public, Private, & the Unknown
Many underground facilities and structures are not marked by the 811 system. Our technicians a 5 step process to ensure your job site is marked with complete accuracy.
Step 1: Site Walk
Visual Site Scan
An MPL Project Manager takes the time to visually inspect the project site while looking at any maps or prior documentation to identify the known utilities.
Step 2: Find & Verify
the Known Utilities
EM Receiver / Transmitter
We locate the known private utilities with surface level indicators (valves, meters, etc.) such as electric, gas and water lines that continue beyond the meter. During this step, we can verify known public utilities.
- Communication Lines
- Electric Lines
- Abandoned Utilities
Step 3: Find & Identify
EM Passive & Induction Scans
Next we locate any unknown utilities that do not have surface indicators, such as communication lines (including fiber) running between multiple buildings. In many cases, abandoned utilities are also found during this step.
- Underground Storage Tanks (UST)
- Non-Metallic Utilities
- Unknown Utilities
STEP 4: Find Anomalies Underground
Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR)
In this important step, MPL utilizes GPR on every job to find any additional unknown objects in the area such as non-metallic pipes, large storage tanks, plastic water mains. GPR is also used to verify our own marks during the EM process (Step 2) of our locate.
- Plastic Pipes
- Storage Tanks
- Fuel Tanks
- Unmarked Steam Lines
Step 5: A Peace of Mind
A SECURE JOB SITE
MPL's Project Manager documents all findings from each step and creates industry leading deliverables so you have full visibility and understanding of everything that was located on your job site.
- Job Notes
- Site Sketches
- Site Pictures
- GPR Trail Images
- Delivered in one clickable Link
LOCATE, INSPECT, SURVEY
& MITIGATE RISK
No Second Guessing
Due to size, depth and access, sewer mains and laterals are rarely located during the 811 process. In addition, many contractors and engineers often need Sewer Inspection and Cross-bore mitigation services to confirm any hidden dangers or liabilities in these lines. Common finds are cross-bores, sewer line cracks, infractions, blockages, etc.
- Locate Sewers & Possible Blockages
- Identify Cross-bores
- Identify Cracks and Future Issues
Private Utility Locating
Quality, Timely, & Safe Locates
Private locators mark the areas that contract 811 locators are unable to mark.
Keep your crews and the public unharmed from any hidden dangers by having your jobsite protects from private utilities.
Public & Private Utility Locating: What's the Difference?
65% of all underground utility lines are PRIVATE utilities & NOT located by calling 811. MPL locates everything, public & private, saving your project valuable time and money.
Although all utilities are designed the same, to supply every community with the services they need to live their lives, there is a major difference when it comes to protecting those utilities from digging.
A "public" utility is provided by a utility company for the services and utility lines they own and maintain. Utility lines are located to the "dissemination point" or "point of service" by the utility company, and each utility company may define exactly at what point their service ends.
- One call (811) manages this process
- Guidelines vary per state
- 24-72 hours to locate facilities once notified
- One call members should have accurate records of buried utilities
- Typical public utilities: electric, gas/oil, water, sewer, phone & cable/fiber
A private utility is any utility that is NOT owned by a utility company.
- There is no one call (811) to manages this process & there are no state guidelines
- 65% of utility lines are private utilities & NOT located by calling 811
- Facility owners are responsible for maintaining and locating these facilities
- A much different tool and skill set to locate, many of which are unknown
- Some examples of private utilities are: electric to a barn or shed, gas/propane line to a grill or generator, Fire suppression systems and irrigation lines, sewer laterals, private fiber networks, septic systems, chemical lines, product lines, oxygen lines, security lines, etc.
- These buried utilities are JUST AS DANGEROUS if struck while digging
Private Utility Locating
Value & Protection Made Easy with MPL
To keep your project on schedule
& Partner Services
Every job is different
Locate what's needed
& Utility Mapping
On Every Project
Is the LAW, and you must call them - remember that 811 only locates public utilities.
of utility lines are private utilities and are NOT located bycalling 811.
The Mason's first started locating in 1999 and have been the innovators in private locating since.
PRIVATE LOCATING FAQs
Do I need to call 811?
Anyone who plans to dig should call 811 or go to their state 811 center's website a few business days before digging to request that the approximate location of buried utilities be marked with paint or flags so that you don't unintentionally dig into an underground utility line.
How do I know if I have Private Utilities on my job site?
The state one-call (811) only marks public utilities, those which are before the service meter. Any utility beyond the service meter is usually considered private, which will require a second call to Mason Private Locating.
What kind of training do your technicians go through?
What if I have an emergency after hours or on the weekends?
Clients are able to call our toll-free number (888-316-3933) that is routed to the on-call team in order to assure that MPL is prepared to handle your utility locating needs. MPL is here to serve our customers 24 hours per day, 365 days a year - if an emergency arises.
What is GPR, and why does MPL use it on every locate?
GPR (Ground Penetrating Radar) is a detection method used to identify the location of subsurface materials using radio waves to identify buried or hidden objects within a structure or beneath a surface. On most job sites, there are some unknown utilities that would never have been found by traditional locating methods. When you utilize GPR, you are increasing your chances that everything under the surface will get located.
What makes your locate process different, why choose MPL?
The Mason family helped innovate and professionalize the private locating industry by developing training, safety, and operational standards that are second to none in the industry. We developed the process that some of the industry follow today, and we continue to push that process to ensure all of your utilities are marked, with quality, efficiency and precision.
How quickly can you get to my job site from the time I call?
We pride ourselves on being there for our partners. We have the most qualified technicians in the industry, and we can get to your job site with same day/next day service when needed.