C+S May 2022 Vol. 8 Issue 5 (web)


Channel Sponsor: Leica Geosystems | www.pure-suveying.com

As the saying goes, “Time is money,” and general contractors, superin- tendents, and project managers know that the cliché means focusing on keeping workflow going as smoothly as possible. Like a conductor of a symphony, GCs make sure each trade “chimes in” when needed – not before and not after. Especially in the construction world, the GC’s role is to keep the “instruments” (mechanical, electrical, and plumbing contractors, concrete, framers, fire and sprinkler, drywallers, and steel contractors) working together in harmony. Giving construction crews ground penetrating radar (GPR) systems helps enhance the safety and efficiency of the jobsite. Many factors can reduce construction efficiency Construction efficiency can be affected by a variety of factors. There can be breakdowns in timing due to shipment delays. Did a plumb- ing sleeve get knocked out of place during the pour? Did steel pieces needed to weld framing together get covered by concrete? Is there a change order that requires a conduit or pipe run to be moved 10 inches – on all 30 floors? While these issues are being sorted out, there is often a domino effect with multiple contractors – even one or two minor issues can result in a cascading delay for the tradespeople on site. Data sharing on the construction site While construction cultures do tend to vary by region, it is not uncom- mon to see superintendents, assistants, project managers, and engineers walking around with ToughPad tablets connected wirelessly, giving them real time access to individual plans, schedules, and drawings. Imagine standing on the 30th floor of a high rise and being able to pull as-builts on a screen rather than having to walk all the way to a construction office that may or may not even be within the building. Different manufacturers are bringing in tools to digitize space and drawings. For example, if the fire sprinkler pipes are mistakenly placed in the same location as plumbing lines, those with tablets could shoot the conflict to CAD engineers and get it resolved much more easily. Being able to upload the GPR data to the company’s server and share it with engineers who have to make a decision on whether it is clear so they can drill is a real time and money saver. Without this informa- tion, they would have to go to the office, print out the data and drive it somewhere – adding steps and time and costing more money. On the horizon is an increase in cloud-based sharing of information along all levels of the construction process, from data collection to Using Ground Penetrating Radar to Increase Construction Efficiency On-site equipment can keep workflow going smoothly By Brett Caldwell

the decision makers (engineers, project managers) and back down to the trades doing the work (electricians, plumbers, mechanicals). This even extends to GIS-based data making its way to excavators clearing

ground for the beginning of a project. GPR tools can improve safety

GPR is almost always needed when something unexpected occurs. It is rarely something planned out in the construction cycle. So how can contractors keep unplanned events from adversely affecting the con- struction schedule? One way is to give GCs access to GPR equipment on each jobsite. Many trades and GCs are bringing in units to keep on hand, so a simple problem can be fixed quickly. Newer equipment features user friendly interfaces, easy enough that someone who does not “do GPR for a living” can take the tool out and use it for clearing an area, double checking to see if possibly a sleeve has been forgotten – or to make sure concrete drillers are not going to hit anything. This can be done relatively easily, with manufacturer’s training and a bit of experience. (It should be noted that GPR service providers will always have a place; some areas are just so complicated that having years of experience with thousands of scans under their belt is necessary.) Take a recent example of a tower crane being used for support during construction of a high rise building in Austin, Texas. The crane anchors affixed to different floors started breaking, presenting a significant safety issue as there was a public street below and the new construction was surrounded by occupied buildings. The job came to a screeching halt when it was discovered; GPR was used to verify damage and in - dicate areas for new anchors, and the job could quickly start up again without further delay. Another example was a utility company that was conducting horizon- tal boring for installation of a fiber optic cable. A horizontal boring company used 811 to mark out utilities based on use of as-builts. Un -



May 2022

Made with FlippingBook Annual report