A new rule has gone in here saying we can only use NULCA Accredited Locators Onsite. Do you know what NULCA is and are you guys accredited?
Yes, we are NULCA accredited.
NULCA stands for the National Utility Locating Contractors Association, and we have been involved with NULCA for many years now.
NULCA is a not-for-profit organisation that focuses on improving the standards of the locating industry. Similar to say what the Master Plumbers Association is for plumbers or HIA is for builders. However, unlike the other two that have been around for years, NULCA has only been around for about 10 years as the locating industry itself is still very young.
Ben Minutoli, the Geelong Cable Locations director, has been on the NULCA committee for several years now and has filled several different positions, including the secretary.
If you have more questions about NULCA itself you can go to there website which is www.nulca.com.au or of course just give us a call and ask for Ben and he will be more than happy to answer any questions you have about NULCA itself.
In terms of your question, they have a new rule about only using NULCA accredited locators. That is good that your company has implemented this rule. Several large companies are heading down this road and it is only going to be a good thing for the industry as a whole.
Currently, there are no apprenticeships, degrees or take courses that cover Underground Service Locating. So what that means is that any Joe Blow can head down to Bunnings, buy himself a locator, put an ad in the local paper or on Google and call himself a locator.
Now the poor consumer out there (being you guys that need to find where the underground services are) have got no idea which guys out there have been around for years and have heaps of experience (beware self-promotion here) like us 🙂 compared to Joe Blow, who saw a locator on eBay, has watched a how-to YouTube clip and just wants some extra beer money.
And NULCA accredited locator…..
Ok, so this is where the NULCA accredited locator bit comes in. NULCA have gone out and created a comprehensive two-day course for those with locating experience to go through. After you have gone through and completed the intensive course and have been assessed and have passed the tests then you will be NULCA accredited. So, you as a consumer will then know you have someone out on site that has been assessed by the industry to be competent.
Which currently as an industry is the best that we have. At Geelong Cable Locations we hope that eventually there are more courses introduced so that a higher level of training and testing is available so that you can tell the difference between The Good, the Bad and The Ugly.
Or better still hopefully the bad ones can learn to get better and the ugly ones just say it is all too hard and give up.
We would also recommend speaking to the locators themselves on the phone, telling them what you need done and asking how they would do it. You should get a good feel within a minute or so if the guy you are talking to is a skilled and experienced locator or if it is just someone that is doing it as a hobby.