Enbridge recently announced that they would be charging $200 for locates. Over the last week I’ve heard a lot of consternation over this and I’ve weighed it up in my own mind.

Enbridge are kind of stuck in between a rock and hard place. On the one hand the current model does not serve their interests and the huge increase in fiber installs means that they were going to be caught spending for a bunch of locates, many of which may be superfluous. So if they force people to pay, they’ll only get a locate when they absolutely need one. On the other hand Enbridge are a utility owner and they do rely on One Call and locates identifying and protecting their infrastructure.

A utility owner this large starting to charge for locates is going to have a huge knock on effect in the industry and other utility owners are already taking notice. If they adopt a similar model and it becomes commonplace, that's going to be a huge shift in the damage prevention industry.

When you change to a paid model everything changes and OneCall centers and other stakeholders are concerned about that. If every utility owner does the same, it will ramp up costs and in turn discourage people from calling in locates, meaning more strikes. And at the end of the day the consumer always ends up paying no matter what happens.

What do you guys think? What would you have done in Enbridge's shoes?

#infrastructure #change #locates #enbridge #utilities #onecall #call811

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