Training of inspectors and engineers in Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD): The California experience

Samuel Ariaratnam, Mohammad Najafi, Joseph Morones

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


This paper presents an overview of training academies on horizontal directional drilling (HDD) conducted for the education and training of 125 resident engineers and permit inspectors for the California Dept. of Transportation, 54 utility inspectors, 16 consultants, and 26 city/county Inspectors. Each of the four academies took place over a 3-day period during which the first and third days involved intense classroom preparation. The second day provided field experience through demonstrations of various equipment and construction methods used in HDD. A pretest was administered on the first day, prior to any instruction, followed by a final test administered at the end of the last day. A grade of 70% or better was required to pass the course. The overall average of all 221 participants was 75.27% with a standard deviation of 8.10%. Further analysis of the test results concluded that level of formal education did not have any significant effect on the final grade obtained in the course. In addition, the average grade of each academy increased slightly with each subsequent academy. The improved scores could be a function of the quality of the class as well as the quality of instruction with each academy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)63-70
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Professional Issues in Engineering Education and Practice
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2002


  • California
  • Drilling
  • Inspectors
  • Training
  • Trenchless technology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Industrial relations
  • Strategy and Management


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