More Data, More Problems?
Big data has officially arrived for stormwater. Information is being gathered and analyzed to benefit water quality in meaningful ways. This trend is also becoming apparent in the compliance inspection world. Together we will explore how gathering inspection data may change the Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) implementation process.
Our team has completed thousands of construction stormwater inspections over the past several years. This was typically a task that required a pen, paper, and clipboard. More frequently we are being asked to complete these inspections using an electronic device and an inspection application. As this evolution occurs it is important for the community to understand the possible implications of more available information. For most of humanity we have progressed with the general consensus that knowledge is power. But what if knowledge is also liability? Or useless? Or a waste of money? Or insignificant in comparison to project schedule & budget? Or increases likelihood of increased regulation? For each step that allows for greater client awareness there is the possibility of a corresponding step for regulatory oversight.
This presentation will recount the progression in inspection recording technology. As the path is discussed we will also discuss the positives and negatives that come along with it. Pen and paper. Interactive PDF. Inspection application. While the ability for an owner to analyze inspection trends becomes possible, the opportunity for an inspector to produce a valueless inspection report may also be growing.
Presenters will engage the audience with questions to encourage a collaborative experience. Input from attendees will help the group take away real world applications. Some of these questions include: How many are currently using electronic inspection reports? Is the information being used to shape future actions? Are we progressing if we are just gathering information for no purpose? How are inspection findings shared with clients? Do clients care enough? How are corrective actions resolved? Is the data being analyzed to guide future actions?
Electronic inspections may help inspectors and project owners bridge an information gap. This may allow for more focused resource allocation on construction projects. It may also provide a bridge for regulators to more closely track inspection results and follow up. Let us all be aware.
Dave Mercier is a Professional Engineer and CASQA Trainer of Record with a variety of surface water management experience, concentrating on water quality and flood control. Dating back to the development of the current CGP, his past several years of effort have been focused on construction stormwater. Using inspection and SWPPP development experience, he provides clients with CGP interpretation, understanding of risk, and implementation guidance in a program management role. He advises project owners from many industries, with emphasis on home builders and utilities.
Julie Granbery is a QSD/P and manages Southern California Edison’s Construction Storm Water Program. SCE services 50,000 square miles are of central, coastal, and Southern California. She has a Master’s Degree from the University of California, Santa Barbara in Pollution Prevention & Remediation with Water Resources and began her consulting career working on water quality projects for public and private sector clients before joining SCE six years ago.