Canadian Common Ground Alliance

Canadian Common Ground Alliance

Damage Prevention is a Shared Responsibility


Education Sessions

Keynote Presentations

Wednesday Morning Keynote

Johnny Johnston 

The Evolving Energy Landscape

Johnny Johnston is the Chief Operating Officer for Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. accountable for the operations of Liberty Utilities that serve nearly 800,000 electric, gas and water customers across North America, and unregulated Liberty Power that has a portfolio of predominantly renewable generation assets.  Johnny offers more than 20 years of international experience in the utilities industry having previously held a number of senior leadership roles within transformation, operations, customer service and strategy in both the UK and US across their gas and electric businesses.

Johnny has served on the Board for the not-for-profit organization Heartshare Human Services of New York. He holds a Masters degree in Engineering Science from the University of Oxford and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Cranfield. Johnny is a registered Chartered Engineer in the UK.

Wednesday Lunch Keynote

Keith Brown

Navigating the Needle of Safety

Keith Brown

Navigating the Needle of Safety

Keith Brown is a world-class VIP entertainer, keynote speaker and magician that has inspired wonder in over 22 countries and counting. Most recently, Keith performed in Iceland for the First Lady! He's a recent TEDx speaker and an international best selling author on Amazon. He was chosen Toronto's BEST Magician... and he's not even from Toronto. When not touring his public show to sold-out houses and rave reviews, Keith trains Ivey MBAs and business executives in effective communication and high-impact presentational skills.

After a decade of performing his signature needle swallowing routine something went amiss and landed Keith in the hospital. Keith survived to tell his story and the sobering lessons about risk and determination he learned along the way. Learn how Keith implemented a number of safety regulations, procedures and strategies to minimize risk and the possibility of returning to the hospital. Discover how Keith transformed one of the biggest failures of his career into one of his greatest successes!

Thursday Morning Keynote

Bob Kipp

Q&A: Current State and Future State of the Damage Prevention Industry

Robert Kipp served as President of the Common Ground Alliance (CGA) from its inception in 2001 until 2016.

Prior to his current role with the CGA, Mr. Robert Kipp served as President and Chief Executive Officer of BCI Inc., in Chantilly, VA from April 1994 until March 2001. During his career, Mr. Kipp also held various, senior-level management roles with Bell Canada and Bell Canada International.

Mr. Kipp was also an elementary school teacher for 3 years and a majority owner of 6 sports stores in the Ottawa area from 1987 until 2015.

Mr. Kipp has a Bachelor of Administration Degree from the University of Ottawa, in Ontario, Canada. He has received executive training at the FUQUA School of Executive Management, Duke University, NC.

Mr. Kipp and his family received their American citizenship in 2002. He lives with his wife, Faye. They have two children – Leah and Blair, and 2 grandchildren.

Thursday Lunch Keynote

Jowi Taylor

Six String Nation

Cultural Entrepreneur, Award-winning Broadcaster and Progressive Patriot. “The story of Canada as you’ve never held it before.” Jowi’s audacious Six String Nation project distills stories of diverse cultures, communities, characters and events from every province and territory of Canada into a single guitar called Voyageur – an object that is at once touchstone, talking-stick and living instrument. Jowi’s presentation goes beyond Canada’s cultural clichés, galvanizing audiences with a story that is as deeply personal as each individual in the room and as vast as the country itself. It’s a wonderfully compelling story about building a guitar using pieces of historical and cultural material from every part of Canada. His presentation is more than a story about a guitar, but rather a story and lesson about our country. The Voyageur guitar represents and holds pieces we treasure across the country and tells of geography, history, pride and more: one of the seat boards from Massey Hall, a tiny bit of gold from his Maurice Rocket Richard’s Stanley Cup ring, and tells a moving story of one of the most rare & revered trees in Canada that embodies the spirit of a nation.

Plenary Sessions

  • Risks and Trends in Adult Education
    9:00 AM, Wednesday October 9
    Jeff Mulligan; Owner – ASTEC SAFETY INC.
    Debbie Shelley; CEO – Director of Training, Global Training Centre

Session Notes

When you get two of the leaders in the industry in Damage Prevention (Ground Disturbance) Training at the table, what can you expect? A few laughs, some counter-opinions and their extensive combined experience will surely result in stories of success, challenges, complete misses and interesting new developments in the industry. 

You have heard of Classroom, eLearning, Blended, Client Specific and Public Courses. How much technology is the right amount? Is Virtual Reality over-hyped or ready for "Prime Time?" Debbie and Jeff will provide their insights into the most effective processes for transferring knowledge to adults from 18-80 years old, that can be leveraged tomorrow to  shape safer workplaces to protect infrastructure and our teams.

Bring your questions to the session and be prepared for a lively discussion!

  • This Land is Your Land: Locating Trends Across Canada
    3:00 PM, Wednesday October 9
    Michelle Tetreault; Executive Director, Alberta Common Ground Alliance
    Chris Hyland; President & CEO, BC One Call Ltd.
    Michael McGivery; Damage Prevention Manager, Enbridge Inc
    Jean-Luc Rossi; Director, Softex
    Darcy Hurlock; Manager of Operations, TELUS Cable Locate Support Centre
    Grant Piraine; President, Own Your Safet

Panel discussion on locating trends across Canada. Moderated by Grant Piraine, join panelists from across Canada in their discussion on locating trends. Areas represented: Alberta, British Columbia, Ontario, and Quebec.

  • Changing Climate, Asset Management, and Resiliency with Buried Infrastructure
    10:30 AM, Thursday October 10
    Darwin Durnie; Founder - Darwin Durnie Consulting Corp
What do changing climate, resiliency, and asset management have in common – RISKS. This presentation will explore how the buried infrastructure community is affected by these risks and the merits of “consequence management” versus a “whole of society approach” will be discussed. 

Break Out Sessions

Break Out Session 1: 11:00 AM, Wednesday, October 9 

  • Identifying Occupational Health and Safety Risks Related to Damages to Underground Infrastructures 
    Nathalie de Marcellis-Warin; Full Professor, Polytechnique Montreal, Chief Executive Officer, CIRANO
    Ingrid Peignier; Senior Director of Partnerships and Research Valorization with CIRANO (Center for Interuniversity Research and Analysis of Organizations)                                                                                                                                                  

Session Notes - English

Session Notes - French

This presentation will explain CIRANO’s latest study that aims to understand the risks to which workers are exposed in order to better adapt awareness-raising efforts and better target prevention measures. This demonstrates that damages to underground infrastructure create significant hazards for workers exposed to it.

  • Government of Canada Digs into Damage Prevention
    Ravi Sundararaj, Senior Director, Infrastructure Asset Management, Public Services and Procurement Canada

Session Notes - English

Session Notes - French

As the CCGA drafted Bill S-229, Public Services & Procurement Canada considered and investigated the potential impacts on its mandate. Fast forward a few years to hear how PSPC has implemented the values of S-229 and has become a Damage Prevention, student, advocate and champion.

To assess how digital media technologies could be used for raising awareness about damage prevention and potentially influence behaviours, FBC and BC One Call partnered with the Centre of Digital Media and a group of master's students. The result was Contractor City, a casual game for mobile users that targets younger contractors and reinforces safe digging practices in an engaging way. The results of the project will be presented in early April with a goal to deliver a product prototype that could be developed into a mobile application.

Break Out Session 2: 1:45 PM, Wednesday, October 9

  • Communication: The First Step to a Safe Excavation
    Robert Morrison, Damage Prevention Coordinator, Manitoba Hydro

Leveraging the integrity of online locate requests for the benefits of streamlining field opportunities.

  • Legislation Across Canada: Roundtable
    Michelle Tetreault; Executive Director with Alberta Common Ground Alliance
    Denis Courchesne; President & CEO with Info-Excavation
    Ben Hamilton; Executive Director, Ontario One Call
    Dave Baspaly; Executive Director with British Columbia Common Ground Alliance 

This roundtable will be an interactive session to understand and discuss legislative pursuits across Canada including Quebec, Alberta, and British Columbia. Lean about lessons learned from Ontario Bill 8, the progress regional partners are making with provincial pursuits. and the status of Bill S229.

  • Come One, Come All: Utility GIS Data Aggregation                                                                                                                     Kris Philpott; Vice President, Planview Utility Services

Session Notes

To illustrate a successful collaborative damage prevention solution that we've been involved with for over a decade: aggregating networking data on behalf of utility stakeholders, municipalities, one call centers, locate service providers, excavators, and engineering firms. In doing so, we add situational awareness, improve data quality, and enhance safety.

This endeavor of cooperation between utility stakeholders is long overdue, and in everyone's best interest ... not only for damage prevention, but public safety as well. We will elaborate on how we got here, the process and its benefits, and why it's important to you, your infrastructure network, your company, and the community at large.

Break Out Session 3: 8:30 AM, Thursday, October 10

  • Gordie Howe International Bridge Project
    Grant C. Hilbers; Director of Environmental, Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority

Session Notes

The Gordie Howe International Bridge project is one of Canada’s largest infrastructure projects which will bring much-needed improvements to the movement of goods and people across the Windsor-Detroit trade corridor. Join Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority to learn more about the design and construction approach to the bridge, two state-of-the-art ports of entry and Michigan Interchange connection.

  • How does AI Improve Accuracy of Underground Locates?
    Denis Courchesne; President & CEO with Info-Excavation

With respect to the quality of information related to the location of underground infrastructures, the issues encountered today are closely connected to our prior knowledge. Owners of underground infrastructures have all experienced issues linked to the knowledge of where their infrastructures are precisely located.

In cooperation with one of its partners, Info-Excavation is currently working on a solution to deal with these issues. Using deep learning methods of artificial intelligence, this solution aims to accurately reposition underground infrastructures within the public right-of-way.

For several years, land markings have been made to locate certain sections of underground infrastructures. Unfortunately, owners hardly ever used this knowledge to update their system’s geospatial data referencing.

To improve the response to locate requests made by contractors related to future excavation projects, reduce the processing volume of these requests and diminish their inherent cost to owners of underground infrastructures, the quality of information known on these installations must be improved.

The goal of this initiative is to assess the use of automatic learning algorithms to help improve the process of locating underground infrastructures. The results of this multi-phased project as well as its intended use will be presented after each phase.

  • Board 101: Does Your Board Need to Go to the Next Level?
    Lyn McDonell, President, The Accountability Group

Board 101 Governance Resource 2019

Board 101 How to Be An Masterful Chair

Board 101: Does your board need to go the next level? This session will provide guidance on steps to develop a more effective board, providing participants key success factors and practical tips. Participants will learn what they can do to recruit the right talent around the board table, plan better meetings, and increase director engagement. The session will be a fast-moving blend of presentation and interactive dialogue to ground the learning.

Break Out Session 4: 9:45 AM, Thursday, October 10

  • Six Nations Natural Gas Infrastructure Expansion Project
    Nick Petruzzella; General Manager, Six Nations Natural Gas

Session Notes

Federal and provincial governments have committed to a series of significant infrastructure investments that are critical to the health and sustainability of First Nation communities.
Hear from Six Nations Natural Gas about their infrastructure expansion project and their decision to register with Ontario One Call.

  • DIRT 2018: What are the results and what are we doing to change behavior?
    Nathalie Moreau; Executive Director Prevention and Public Affairs with Info-Excavation
    Richard Durrer; Reporting Specialist with Ontario One Call

How many damages per day in Canada??? We will review and give insights into the creation of the 2018 DIRT report while also giving more background on the data and assumptions used in creating it.  Come discuss about the past, present and future of the DIRT database, and potential ways to spread the message of damage prevention and educating the target groups on where we can all improve.

  • Implementing CSA Z663-18: Addressing the limitations and gaps in stakeholder awareness and engagement                       Russ Leedham; Owner/Operations Manager, ProACTIVE Planning, Inc.                                                                                          Blaise Fontaine; Owner/Director of Engagement, ProACTIVE Planning, Inc.

Session Notes

The scope of current engagement practices dealing with land use planning in the vicinity of pipelines systems typically begins and ends with "consultation and inclusion" late in the planning process. We believe the solution lies within education on both sides of the pipeline - physically and administratively - by implementing the principles of CSA Z-663-18 and promoting "awareness through consistent and collaborative stakeholder communication early in the land use planning process." Our presentation examines case studies where awareness and early collaboration between stakeholders and pipeline operators was absent, explores the suggested formalization of roles and responsibilities for municipalities, and reviews emerging and recommended best practices in stakeholder engagement.

Vendor Outreach Sessions

  • Next-Gen Locates
    ProStar Geocorp, Inc.
    1:00 PM, Tuesday, October 8
    Bill McIntyre, Vice Presidentof Business Development

Session Notes

Our current process of locating is based on temporary marks; however, the standard locate process provides little data to verify accuracy nor a way to update GIS records when discrepancies are found.The goal is to locate these subsurface utilities and make them digital, verifiable, and permanent recordings. ProStar calls this “precision in the pedigree.” This presentation provides an overview on industry challenges and how ProStar Geocorp address it using Cloud (real-time) and Mobile (EM/GPS integration) Technologies to improve the locating process, accuracy, compliance and most important safety!

  • Software Based RFID (Radio Frequency) Asset Management and its Key Role in Damage Prevention
    Safe Locate Solutions
    2:00 PM, Tuesday, October 8
    Adam Blanchard, Founder & President
    Dean Paquette, Vice President

Software based RFID (Radio Frequency) Asset management has been adopted by the some of the leaders of industry globally in damage prevention already, as it is widely accepted as the most effective and user-friendly system for managing critical below ground infrastructure and processes.   Providing RFID Check-in points, frontline field excavation & maintenance personnel are shown a full data set of the asset including photos, engineered drawings, procedures, as-builds, reports etc.  Prior to excavation, all information available onsite, absolute locations and check in points prior to breaking ground. 

  • AI for Enhanced Damage Prevention
    3:00 PM, Tuesday, October 8
    Joe Sullivan, VP of Strategic Development
In this case study, a major gas distribution company leverages AI-powered software to predict which of daily excavation tickets are at the highest risk of having damages including methane leaks; proactively intervening to prevent third party damages. In this data-driven approach to damage prevention, AI identified damages caused by excavator error, locator error, and instances of no one-calls (cases in which there were no 811 tickets).  Furthermore, the AI was able to identify opportunities to optimize the effectiveness of 811 outreach to areas susceptible to no-call ins.

    Présentation des conférenciers

    Conférencier du mercredi matin

    Johnny Johnston

    Le paysage énergétique en évolution

    Johnny Johnston, Président-directeur général chez Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp
    et responsable des opérations chez Liberty Utilities, une entreprise qui désert 800 000 clients en électricité, en gaz et en eau potable partout en Amérique du Nord ainsi que chez Liberty Power, une entreprise non réglementée, qui possède une gamme d’actifs essentiellement composée d’installations d’énergie renouvelable.
    Conférencier mercredi midi

    Keith Brown

    Entre l’aiguille et le risque

    Keith Brown est un conférencier de renommée mondiale, un animateur VIP et un magicien qui, par ses prestations, a su inspirer les gens dans plus de 22 pays. Il a fait sa plus récente performance devant la première dame de l’Islande! Il a aussi donné une conférence lors d’un événement TEDx, et c’est un auteur à succès de renommée internationale sur Amazon. Il a été nommé « Meilleur magicien de Toronto », et ce, même s’il n’est pas originaire de Toronto. Outre ses tournées mondiales présentées au grand public où il fait salle comble, Keith forme des détenteurs de MBA des plus grandes universités ainsi que des chefs d’entreprise à communiquer efficacement ainsi qu’à donner des présentations à grand impact.

    Après avoir présenté son spectacle où il avale une aiguille pendant plus d’une décennie, Keith a dû être hospitalisé à la suite d’un accident malheureux. Keith témoigne aujourd’hui des apprentissages faits en cours de route qui l’ont amené à réfléchir à la notion de risque et de persévérance. Apprenez comment Keith a mis en place des règles, des procédures et des stratégies pour minimiser les risques et ainsi éviter d’être de nouveau hospitalisé. Découvrez comment Keith a transformé un de ses plus grands échecs en une des plus grandes réussites de sa carrière !

    Conférence du jeudi matin

    Bob Kipp

    État actuel et futur de la prévention des dommages

    Un retour en arrière sur l’expérience et les prévisions de Robert Kipp en matière de prévention des dommages. 

    Conférencier jeudi midi

    Jowi Taylor

    Six String Nation

    Jowi Taylor est un entrepreneur culturel, un animateur radio primé et un patriote avant-gardiste. Six String Nation raconte « l’histoire du Canada comme vous ne l’avez jamais connu ». À l’aide d’une seule guitare nommée Voyageur, Jowi Taylor résume des anecdotes provenant de différentes cultures, communautés, personnages et événements de toutes les provinces et territoires du Canada. Son instrument devient à la fois pierre angulaire, bâton d’orateur et instrument vivant. La présentation offerte par Jowi va au-delà des stéréotypes culturels : une histoire envoûtante aussi profondément unique que chaque personne dans la salle, et aussi vaste qu’est le pays; une histoire très émouvante qui raconte la fabrication d’une guitare à partir de morceaux historiques et culturels de chaque province et de chaque territoire du Canada. Sa prestation est plus qu’une histoire sur la fabrication d’une guitare, c’est l’histoire et les enseignements qui ont façonné notre pays. La guitare Voyageur contient les morceaux et représente le trésor qui fait la richesse du Canada. Elle contient aussi de la géographie, de l’histoire, de la fierté et plus encore : un des sièges du Massey Hall, un morceau de la bague de la Coupe Stanley appartenant à Maurice « le Rocket » Richard, en plus de raconter l’histoire émouvante d’un des arbres les plus rares et les plus vénérés au Canada, l’arbre qui incarne l’esprit de la nation canadienne. 

    Sessions plénières

    Les changements climatiques, la gestion des actifs et la résilience en matière d’infrastructures souterraines
    Darwin Durnie : Fondateur de l’entreprise Darwin Durnie Consulting Corporation

    Les tendances et les risques associés à la formation professionnelle en continu
    Debbie Shelley : Directrice générale et directrice de la formation chez Global Training Centre

    Cette terre est la vôtre : les tendances en matière de localisation au Canada
    Michelle Tetreault : Directrice générale chez le Common Ground Alliance de l’Alberta

    Séances en atelier

    Venez tous! — L’agrégation de données SIG des infrastructures de services publics
    Doug Estok : Directeur, Développement des affaires chez OEC

    ORDI 2018 — Quels sont les résultats du rapport? Que faisons-nous pour modifier les comportements?
    Nathalie Moreau : Directrice générale, Prévention et affaires publiques chez Info-Excavation
    Richard Durrer : Spécialiste en transmission de données chez Ontario One Call

    Comment I A peut’il améliorer l’exactitude des localisations d’infrastructures souterraines?
    Denis Courchesne : Président et Chef de la direction chez Info-Excavation

    Identification des risques pour la santé et la sécurité au travail en lien avec les dommages aux infrastructures souterraines     
    Ingrid Peignier : Directrice principale, Partenariats et valorisation de la recherche chez CIRANO (Centre interuniversitaire de recherche
    en analyse des organisations)

    La législation pour la prévention des dommages au Canada : Table ronde
    Michelle Tetreault : Directrice générale chez Common Ground Alliance en Alberta
    Denis Courchesne : Président et Chef de la direction chez Info-Excavation
    Ravi Sundararaj : Directeur principal, Gestion des biens d’infrastructure chez Services publics et Approvisionnement Canada (SPAC)
    Dave Baspaly : Directeur général chez Common Ground Alliance en Colombie-Britannique.

    D’autres séances en atelier ont été ajoutées! Vérifiez le site Web afin de connaître les mises à jour.

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