March 7, 2019
By Terry Murphy CLM

Terry Murphyhe Ontario Regional Common Ground Alliance (ORCGA) recently held its annual Damage Prevention Symposium, Feb. 13-15 in Niagara Falls, Ont. Celebrating its 15th year, the three-day event include a trade show, informative seminars, social events and the ORCGA’s annual general meeting. As part of the AGM, the ORCGA’s mission and vision were highlighted and the 2018-2019 Strategic Plan for the damage prevention industry was reviewed. Below are some of the highlights.


The mission of the ORCGA is to enhance public safety and utility infrastructure reliability through a unified approach to effective and efficient damage prevention.


Leading Ontario to be the safest jurisdiction with the most reliable infrastructure in North America.

Strategic plan priorities

ORCGA Strategic Plan Priorities for 2019 are:

Rediscovering our purpose
Continue to develop new methods to increase and sustain sponsorship of the organization.

Continue to target increased membership in the municipal, electrical, and equipment sectors through industry contacts and ORCGA committees, meetings and events.

Enhancing services (offerings)
Continue to proactively schedule, organize and execute the delivery of the Damage Prevention Technician (DPT) training program across Ontario.

Finalize the model and content for the Excavator Training Program.

Create a series of tailgate Training Safety Talks based on the Canadian Common Ground Alliance (CCGA) Best Practices version 3.0.

Refocusing our direction
Hire an events planner for ORCGA events and trade shows; acquire and implement CVent event planning software.

Serve on the Board of the Canadian Common Ground Alliance as the vice-chair for 2019, working with the ORCGA Board and regional partners across Canada to develop and implement a plan for some form of federal legislation.

Developing alliances
Continue to develop and enhance partnerships with affiliated safety organizations, including: Infrastructure Health & Safety Association (IHSA), Technical Standards and Safety Association (TSSA), Electrical Safety Authority (ESA), Ontario Ministry of Labour (MOL), and Ontario One Call to collaboratively improve public and worker safety in Ontario.

Articulating value
Lead or participate in advocacy efforts to improve safe digging practices by lobbying governments and/or other regulatory agencies in support for our membership to bring forth issues and start a dialogue to address them.

This strategic plan was revisited at the Board of Directors meeting and presented to the membership during the Annual General Meeting.


The ORCGA will work closely with its members to promote the Strategic Plan and to complete as many of these objectives as possible within the next 12 months. The annual Damage Prevention Symposium was a great success, with over 250 participants, 18 safety seminars and 30 exhibitors at the trade show. The timing of the event helps to gather key players leading up to the many Dig Safe events in March and April, as well as the scheduled meeting across the province for the 13 Geographic Council.

Thank you to all participants who made this year’s Symposium a tremendous success. All industry firms are invited to join the ORCGA to attend next year’s Symposium to be held in mid-February next year at a different location. Stay tuned to for details.
Terry Murphy can be reached at