Established in 2004 by a small group of directional drilling contractors as a regional association, the Northeast Trenchless Association (NTA) has not only served the underground industry in New England – an area not known for conditions conducive to directional drilling – but has established a strong national presence, as well. The group has expanded to encompass all methods of trenchless construction and rehabilitation.
As 2013 comes to a close, NTA members are busy completing final plans for taking its January annual meeting on the road to be held in conjunction with the Underground Construction Technology International Conference & Exhibition (UCT), January 28-30 in Houston. It will be the first time the annual meeting has not been in a New England state.
The NTA is composed of trenchless technology contractors, suppliers and engineers – all volunteers dedicated to the quality improvement of the trenchless industry in the region. Current membership is diverse, composed of those engaged in all methods of trenchless construction design and execution employed in the Northeast United States, including horizontal directional drilling (HDD), pipe bursting, pipe ramming, jack and bore, microtunneling, cured-In-place-pipe (CIPP) lining and other trenchless applications. Associate members represent equipment and drilling fluid manufacturers, pipe suppliers, engineers and product support services.
During 2013, NTA has focused on primary goals of educating and training members and industry stakeholders, including utility owners and operators, and providing visibility for New England’s trenchless industry, said Steve Marcucio, NTA president, whose term will end at the January 2014 annual meeting.
During the past year, the board of directors has focused on refining the strategic plan for the NTA as the association moves forward and strengthening the relationships with other industry associations and organizations.
As part of NTA’s mission and strategic planning, Marcucio said, the association has formed relationships with many professionals and industry associations throughout the country which have allowed members to collaborate on multiple levels with efforts underway both regionally and nationally. One example is recent collaboration with the Trenchless Technology Center (TTC) at Louisiana Tech University and partnership with the TTC and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in presenting a municipal outreach seminar in New England.
“Over the years,” said Marcucio, “we have had multiple exchanges with the Ohio HDD Association – now Great Lakes Trenchless Association (GLTA) – and often have members of our executive boards attend each other’s meetings or present case studies at each other’s conferences. This will continue in 2014 with an NTA member attending the GLTA Annual Conference and presenting case studies and lessons learned from various projects in New England.”
NTA members also collaborated with the IPBA (International Pipe Bursting Association) and other HDD groups on vetting industry consensus documents and participating in work groups that serve the industry as a whole.
The NTA website (http://northeasttrenchless.org) continues to be a point of reference not only for members, but the industry in general. The site contains excellent descriptions of the various trenchless technologies. The NTA membership list provides valuable contacts and there are links to key industry sources of information. The association’s social media presence through Facebook and LinkedIn provides broad opportunities for interaction. A quarterly newsletter is distributed to members and non-members, highlighting case studies from NTA members and schedules of upcoming industry events.
As trenchless construction continues to become a widely accepted method for installing and rehabilitating underground infrastructure, Marcucio said it is important for NTA to continue to be a reliable and consistent source for trenchless training opportunities for municipal utility system operators and consulting engineers.
“It is essential that the technology is applied properly and that potential users understand the technology that they often read about in trade publications,” he said. “Additionally, the NTA must serve its members’ needs and give a return on the investment for both the membership fees and their time investment to be involved in association programs.”
Holding the annual meeting in conjunction with the national UCT Show will allow members the opportunity not only to network with other NTA members, but to take advantage of the strong technical program and trade show exhibits assembled by UCT, he added.
In addition to Marcucio, who is with EJ Prescott, Inc., 2013 NTA board of director members are Tod Cote, Engineers Construction Group, secretary; Shawn Ready, Ted Berry Co. Inc., treasurer; Bruce Hubbard, ETTI, assistant treasurer; William (Bill) Haines, Vari-Tech, Inc., immediate past president; and Jim Hargraves, who is retired, event planning director.
New board of director members will be selected at the 2014 annual meeting in January.
FOR MORE INFO:
Northeast Trenchless Association, www.northeasttrenchless.com