The 3M™ Electronic Marker System (EMS) delivers accurate data to accelerate identification of underground facilities, including pipeline path, pressure control fittings and meter boxes.
In the United States alone, a vast network of pipeline operated by some 3,000 companies stretches for over 2.5 million miles. Construction companies and road grading crews in both rural and urban areas must be careful not to accidentally contact these lines during excavating and trenching work.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 33.4% of all serious pipeline incidents from 1992-2011 resulted from excavation damage to oil and gas transmission and distribution lines. Consequences include injuries and fatalities; emergency response costs; lost product; and damage to public, private and industry property.
In 2011, there were 39 significant incidents of excavation damage to oil and gas transmission and distribution lines, resulting in 2 fatalities, 16 injuries and a total of $14.8 million in damages. Most of these incidents were caused by third parties, but several were the result of operator or contractor error (for more information, see DOT PHMSA).
3M locator and marker products help avoid these costly accidents and make it easier for you to manage your underground facilities. Programmed 3M™ iD Markers increase both efficiency and safety; sophisticated 3M™ Dynatel™ Locators quickly and accurately identify buried assets...trace pipe paths...and provide accurate pipeline depth measurements.
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags, which are used today in everything from toll roads to pet collars, evolved from World War II advances in radar and radio frequency communication. Passive RFID tags, like 3M iD markers, consist of a data-storing microchip and an antenna.
The marker is activated when the locator emits its specific radio frequency. The marker’s antenna then harnesses the power from the signal’s electromagnetic field, using it to send radio waves back to the locator unit. The locator translates these frequencies to information about the installation, including precise depth.
Select 3M Dynatel locators can also write information back to the underground 3M iD marker, making it easy to keep your facility information up to date.