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SurvWest SUE crews performing QL-A testholes
SurvWest SUE crews performing QL-A testholes

Providing in-depth and reliable utility information, SurvWest’s expertise in subsurface utility engineering (SUE) helps reduce many of the risks associated with complex infrastructure projects. Supporting our client’s needs during the project planning and design phases, our SUE services team helps to identify and reduce vulnerabilities associated with underground utilities by using the ASCE 38 Engineering Standards and following Colorado Senate Bill SB 18-167. Our state-of-the-art technology [DG1] and associating utility information with specified Quality Levels (QL), our combined experience and commitment to the SUE industry improves project safety, streamlines construction, and helps mitigate many of the delays and cost over-runs associated with engineering design, right-of-way impacts and utility coordination.

Based upon Colorado Senate Bill SB 18-167 SUE Compliance and ASCE 38 Engineering Standard Utility Investigations, our SUE services include:

QL-D is research-based on existing utility records and verbal recollections. It is the most basic level of information for utility locations.

QL-C is surveying visible utility facilities (e.g., manholes, valve boxes, etc.) and correlating this information with existing QL-D utility records.

QL-B, under the direction of a licensed professional engineer, QL-B uses geophysical techniques and methodologies to determine the existence and horizontal position of underground utilities within the project limits. Called designating, QL-B uses QL-D and QL-C information during the investigation.

QL-A, also known as locating, is the highest level of accuracy available. QL-A is a non-destructive, minimally invasive excavation process that uses QL-D, QL-C, and QL-B information to determine the exact horizontal and vertical position of underground utilities. It determines the type, size, condition, material, and other characteristics associated with the buried utility.

For more information about SUE services and how we can assist you, contact us today.

Benefits of SUE


Makes for safer projects


Aids engineering design practices involving underground infrastructure


Exposes potentially hazardous utilities


May find previously unknown utilities


Reduces utility-related delays


Prevents unnecessary utility relocations


Helps eliminate utility outages / service interruptions


Reduces costly schedule delays / shut downs


Avoids negative media exposure associated with damaged utilities

SUE Team Members

Travis Looney
SUE DIvision Manager
James Mason Hayes
SUE Project Manager II
Scott Lefler
SUE Field Supervisor

Recent SUE Projects