Xcel Energy began a multi-year project to identify and correct any situations where a natural gas line had been inadvertently installed through a sewer line (lateral). As long as a natural gas line intersecting a sewer line is not penetrated, it poses no safety hazard. However, equipment used to unclog sewer lines can penetrate natural gas lines and lead to the dangerous release of natural gas. Xcel Energy reviewed maps and records to identify and correct any conflicts between their underground natural gas distribution system and sewer lines. Based on the results of this review, some areas required additional in-sewer camera inspections. At the time, Xcel Energy had inspected over 100,000 sewer lines. Managing a large volume of data, dispatching work and completing individual records related to this activity within a single platform was a unique challenge for Xcel Energy.
KorTerra customized their KorTerra Enterprise solution, similar in some respects to a workflow management ticketing system, for Xcel Energy to utilize in their Sewer Line Inspection Program. Data was uploaded from Xcel Energy into the remote portion of the KorTerra system, either electronically or manually by the user. The data was then dispatched to crews who were completing tickets in the field utilizing KorTerra’s mobile technology. The system tracked and stored all data within the database to facilitate queries and reports. As Xcel Energy continued with the effort, knowledge of previous inspections at specific addresses was invaluable, helping to avoid duplication of effort, analyze trends, plan work, and ultimately manage the project effectively.
This KorTerra standalone platform was effective at keeping data secure and separate from other efforts in progress at Xcel Energy. It stored all data, allowing for tracking and queries to be performed, as well as serving Xcel Energy’s future data mining needs. The advantages this system provided more than outweighed the cost, and were fundamental to the success of the Sewer Line Inspection Program.
For more information on Xcel Energy and the Sewer Line Inspection Program, please visit www.xcelenergy.com.