Nulca Accreditation enables locators to provide proof of their consistent training standards and training delivery methodology. In the interest of bringing additional credibility and maintaining confidentiality for our members, Nulca has partnered with NSF International Strategic Registrations (NSF-ISR). NSF-ISR now independently reviews all training materials, processes, and programs related to the Nulca Competence Standard and ensures that members are meeting the requirements set forth in the standard. NSF-ISR was chosen to carry out the independent review based on their experience as a global leader in certification, verification, inspection and testing services.

NSF International is an independent global organization that writes standards, and tests and certifies products for the food, water, health sciences and consumer goods industries to minimize adverse health effects and protect the environment. Founded in 1944, NSF is committed to protecting human health and safety worldwide. NSF International Strategic Registrations (NSF-ISR) offers customizable second-party audits, as well as third-party comprehensive management systems registrations to internationally accepted standards for quality assurance and environmental protection for the automotive, aerospace, chemical, energy, medical and manufacturing industries (e.g. ISO 9001, ISO 14001, AS9100, TS16949, etc.). NSF-ISR also has a Second Party program which verifies partner-specific accreditations such as the Nulca Competency Standard.

The standard has been recognized by the Common Ground Alliance (CGA) Best Practices, which identify and validate the best practices to enhance safety and prevent damages to underground facilities. In order to earn the Nulca Accreditation, an organization’s program must be reviewed by NSF-ISR auditors to verify that all 10 components of the Nulca Competence Standard are met.

The 10 components of the Nulca Competence Standard include:

  1. Basic Locating Theory

  2. Use of the Transmitter

  3. Use of the Receiver

  4. Marking Procedures

  1. Knowledge of Facilities

  2. Visual Observation Skills

  3. Safe Work Practices and Regulations

  1. One Call Regulation, Requests and Documentation

  2. Excavator & Customer Relations

  3. Locating Pipelines

Accreditation permits organizations and locators to promote their Nulca accreditation in marketing materials and in RFQs/RFPs, demonstrating their commitment to the highest professional standards in the industry. This allows facility owners to prove to regulators that they are not only meeting regulatory requirements, but taking proactive steps to assure public safety in their surrounding communities. The next page provides an overview of the accreditation process.

The Nulca accreditation process, with verification from NSF International Strategic Registrations (NSF-ISR), consists of these steps:

  1. Your company requests a quote and non-disclosure agreement (NDA) from NSF. NSF will then verify your company is in good standing as a Nulca member. Be sure that you have a copy of the latest Nulca Competency Standard (4th Edition). This is available via the Nulca website.

  2. NSF will send a short application, quote and NDA for your organization to complete. The NDA is between NSF-ISR and your company. Nulca will not have access to any audit materials or information.
  1. Once the completed application, signed quote, and NDA are returned, NSF will assign an auditor and determine your preferred method of document transfer (via private Dropbox or mail). You will also complete an electronic self-evaluation of the audit checklist.

    Private Dropbox: You will upload your training materials and self-evaluation checklist for a qualified NSF auditor to review.
    Trackable Mail: ATTN: NSF-ISR Kevin Hall 789 N. Dixboro Rd. Ann Arbor, MI 48105

  2. If your organization is using third party training materials for modules 1-4 of the Nulca Competency Standard, then you will need to provide the Nulca Accreditation statement number for those modules, as well as express written consent (in the form of a contract agreement or otherwise), for use of the accredited modules.
  1. Once all your training materials are received, an auditor will establish contact with you and begin the review process, letting your organization know if any documents are missing or incomplete.

  2. As the second part of the audit process, the auditor will perform a phone interview with your chosen point of contact.

  3. At the end of the review, the auditor will contact you to discuss the audit findings.

  4. The auditor will send NSF the completed audit review forms, and NSF will then verify that all aspects of the review process have been completed properly.
  1. Once NSF verifies that your program meets all Nulca Accreditation requirements, NSF will issue an electronic Verification Statement to your organization. The Verification Statement is valid for a period of three years from the date of issue.

  2. NSF will email your organization the Verification Statement and all Audit reports associated with your review. Nulca will only receive notice of your accreditation and will only have access to your Verification Statement. (Per the NDA, no audit materials or reports will be shared with Nulca or any other Nulca members.)

  3. The entire process should take no longer than 2-4 weeks. In addition to your auditor, you will have a dedicated program specialist to contact for questions at every step of the way. Once completed, you will be permitted to display your Verification Statement, and will have access to the Nulca “Seal of Accreditation” logo for use in marketing materials and RFQ’s/RFP’s.

Click below to download a printable version of this brochure:

Only members are eligible to participate in our accreditation/certification program. Become a member today to get started down the path to accreditation. Nulca’s continued partnerships and relationships with the CGA, NUCA, APWA, OCSI, PHMSA and many other organizations also give members unprecedented access to professionals throughout North America. Come be a part of this growing association, and give your customers peace of mind with Nulca certification, as we advance the efforts of professional utility locating.

  • To become a member, see our 'Become a Member' Page

  • To learn more about the accreditation process, please download the document below:

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