Subsurface Utility Engineering (SUE)

Non Destructive Identification of Existing Utilities

The construction industry is constantly working towards improving our island’s infrastructure. New construction is constantly in conflict with the right of way of existing infrastructure which is not seen. These utilities are often uncovered during the construction phase and typically result in damage to the infrastructure.

Jaca & Sierra Engineering, PSC recognizes the need to identify subsurface utilities and has created a Utility Clearance and Survey Division which uses geophysical methods to obtain subsurface utility data. J&S commonly uses a Ground Penetration Radar (GPR), Pipe Duct Locator (PDL), among other methods for tracing utilities beneath ground surface using non-invasive methods. Our trained personnel follows the ASCE 38-02 Guideline for the Collection and Depiction of Existing Subsurface Utility Data in order to provide all quality levels (A to D) which cover, Level D, due diligence of seeking information from pertinent utility agencies and Level C surface feature mappings(ie. Manholes, outlets). These procedures are followed by non-invasive geophysical methods(level B) and wherever the conditions are such that utilities cannot be reliably surveyed, level A data is recommended by minimally invasive methods such as hydro-excavation.

Typical Services

  • Utility clearance: Clearing utilities for small excavations, using non-destructive methods.
  • Utility Survey and Mapping: Involves locating utilities and providing survey data with the requirements of each quality Level as per ASCE 38-02
  • Void Detection and defect mapping beneath structures using non-destructive methods

Notable Projects

  • Lilly del Caribe, Carolina, PR: Utility Clearance
  • Amgen Facilities, Juncos, PR: Utility Clearance
  • Plaza del Sol Mall, Bayamón PR: Quality Level B, Utility Mapping
  • Water Storage Tank, Tortola, BVI: Void Detection.
  • VA Hospital 150 KV New Power Distribution System
  • Water Distribution Improvements, Veterans Drive, St. Thomas, USVI