Canadian Common Ground Alliance (CCGA)

The Common Ground Alliance (CGA) is a member-driven association dedicated to ensuring public safety, environmental protection, and the integrity of services by promoting effective damage prevention practices. In recent years, the association has established itself as the leading organization in an effort to reduce damages to all underground facilities in North America through shared responsibility among all stakeholders. The CGA was officially formed in the United States in 2000, with regional chapters forming in Canadian provinces shortly after.

About the CCGA


The Canadian Common Ground Alliance is the voice of Canada’s Regional Partner CGAs, dedicated to working toward damage prevention solutions that benefit all Canadians. The CCGA is Canada’s unified damage prevention voice and attracts members from all Canadian national organizations and associations to share damage prevention and public safety solutions.

The CCGA develops and promotes best practices in a variety of industries that disturb ground as part of their work. Any “best practice,” endorsed by CCGA Regional Partners comes with consensus support from experts representing the following stakeholder groups: Excavators, Locators, Road Builders, Electricity, Telecommunications, Oil, Gas, Railroad, Water, One Call, Public Works, Equipment Manufacturing, Provincial and Federal Regulators, Insurance, Emergency Services and Engineering and Design.

Damage Information Reporting Tool (DIRT)

DIRT stands for the Damage Information Reporting Tool, which allows users to submit damage and near miss reports; browse files submitted by the user’s organization; administer role-based company and user information; edit personal profiles; change/retrieve password; and submit feedback and questions. The primary purpose of collecting underground facility damage data is to analyze data, to learn why events occur, and how actions by industry can prevent them in the future; thereby, ensuring the safety and protection of people and the infrastructure.

The CGA released it’s first DIRT Report nearly a decade ago and has seen significant growth during that time. Annual submissions have grown ten-fold, and the 2013 DIRT Report features submissions from more sources than ever before. The report confirms that a locate request made to a one-call center results in the excavation occurring without incident over 99% of the time. The goal for these percentages continues to be 0% and 100%, respectively.

View the 2014 DIRT Report Here

The CGA has conducted a separate analysis of the damage reports submitted into DIRT affecting natural gas distribution facilities in 2014.

net gas rept

The Natural Gas Distribution Report for 2014 includes an overview of this analysis.

A Little History

Officially formed in the United States in 2000, the Common Ground Alliance (CGA) represents a continuation of the damage prevention efforts embodied by the Common Ground Study. Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Transportation and completed in 1999, this Study represents the collaborative work of 160 industry professionals who identified best practices relating to damage prevention.

The CGA’s Canadian history is significantly different than its U.S. counterpart. In Canada, Regional Partners emerged from the “ground up” in Ontario (ORCGA), British Columbia Common Ground Alliance (BCCGA), Québec CGA (APISQ), the Alberta Common Ground Alliance (ABCGA), Saskatchewan Regional Common Ground Alliance and more recently, the Manitoba Regional Common Ground Alliance and the Atlantic Canada Common Ground Alliance. Recognizing that each Regional Partner shared common national issues, the CCGA began as an ad hoc committee in 2006 to address those issues from a national perspective. Over the course of only a few years, it became clear that the CCGA required more structure to maintain momentum on key issues and in 2009, a governance model was introduced and accepted by the Committee. In late 2009, and in accordance with the approved governance model, the CCGA held its first election to secure an “Executive” – a Chair, Vice-Chair and Secretary.

The CCGA’s primary role is to manage damage prevention issues of national interest that Regional Partners consider best addressed through a single voice.

Regional Partners