Canadian Common Ground Alliance

Canadian Common Ground Alliance

Damage Prevention is a Shared Responsibility



Canadian Common Ground Alliance DIRT Report Estimates Damage to Buried Utilities Continues to Cost Canada At Least $1 Billion Every Year

01 Nov 2018 11:09 AM | Deleted user

Report analyzes when damages to the nation’s infrastructure are most likely to occur

CALGARY, ALBERTA (Nov. 1, 2018) – The Canadian Common Ground Alliance released the 2017 Damage Information Reporting Tool (DIRT) Report today during the national Damage Prevention Symposium in Whistler, B.C. This report presents characteristics, themes and contributing factors leading to damages in Canada as reported via the DIRT system.

In 2017, there were 11,383 damages reported via DIRT for Canada. On average, there were 45 reported damages per work day (assuming 254 work days per year). The societal cost of these damages to underground infrastructure in Canada is estimated to be at least $1 billion per year.

Among all damage reports with an identified and known root cause, the majority (51 percent) occurred because no locate request was made to a One Call Centre.


  • 11,383 damages were reported in 2017
  • Nearly 45 damages occurred per work day.
  • 70% of reported damages occurred in two provinces: Ontario (46%) and Alberta (24%).
  • 51% of damages are the direct result of not making a locate request to a One Call Centre.
  • 89% of damages involved natural gas and telecommunications facilities.
  • Damages are reported to DIRT on a voluntary basis and thus do not reflect the total damages that occur every year.

The Damage Information Reporting Tool (DIRT) is designed to capture data following reports of damage to buried facilities from excavation activities. DIRT allows industry stakeholders in Canada and the United States to submit data anonymously to a comprehensive database. The database is used to identify the characteristics, themes and contributing factors leading to damages. Such findings are summarized in an annual DIRT report.

Reporting damages into the Damage Information Reporting Tool (DIRT) is critical for the CCGA to determine the root causes of damages and develop mitigating measures to reduce and eliminate them.

The complete 2017 DIRT Report is available to download at Stakeholders interested in submitting data to the 2018 report or establish a Virtual Private Dirt account should visit the DIRT website at

About CCGA

The Canadian Common Ground Alliance (CCGA) is a non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing public safety, and increasing the integrity and reliability of Canada’s underground utility infrastructure through the development and implementation of effective and efficient damage prevention practices across Canada. As Canada’s unified voice on damage prevention, the CCGA attracts members from all Canadian national organizations and associations who share common damage prevention and public safety solutions. The CCGA and its Regional Partners welcome all stakeholders who wish to be part of the identification and promotion of best practices that reduce damage to buried utilities.

- 30 -

Media Inquiries:

Mike Sullivan
Executive Director
Canadian Common Ground Alliance

Download news release here.

Copyright 2024 Canadian Common Ground Alliance

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software