December 2022

Stutsman & Gerbaz accelerates Aspen’s residential and infrastructure projects


Stutsman & Gerbaz, Aspen’s well-known earthmoving company, has been providing high-end residential and commercial excavation services since 1960. The company is continuously seeking technologies to increase safety, reduce downtime, and improve its operational efficiency and productivity.

Project: City of Aspen multiple projects.



Stutsman & Gerbaz primarily focuses on residential and commercial foundation and excavation projects in Aspen, encompassing tasks such as infrastructure, utility installation, and road construction.

Operating within an urban setting poses substantial challenges and concerns over personal and environmental safety. Multiple layers of utility infrastructure buried underground are not always marked correctly, and if they are marked, their depth is unknown. 

Approaching each of their construction sites entails time-consuming processes before digging commences. These procedures involve mandatory One Call/811 notification to get utilities marked, and typically involve additional complementary activities such as hand digging and potholing to daylight “known” buried utilities.

Unfortunately, even when performing all the necessary steps and deploying existing state-of-the-art technologies, Stutsman & Gerbaz knew they could only reduce, but not eliminate, the chances of a utility strike.

Despite significant investments in pre-dig activities, costly utility strikes on-site remained a persistent challenge, leading to project delays. In response, the company sought a solution to automate the scanning process, reduce onsite manpower, streamline operations, and minimize costs — all by mitigating the risk of striking utilities during excavation.



Company President, Shay Stutsman, is committed to safety and superior performance, and knew he needed to deploy a new technology to address their challenges and enhance their on-site working processes. He came across RodRadar’s Live Dig Radar® technology during the Utility Expo exhibition in Louisville, Kentucky.

RodRadar’s solution presented a perfect fit for Stutsman & Gerbaz’s challenges. Its Live Dig Radar® (LDR) technology, positioned on the excavate digging bucket, offers automatic real-time, on-site insights into any soil — detecting pipes, cables and other infrastructure, minimizing the risk of utility strikes. The LDR Excavate™ digging bucket creates a new scan with each pass, providing continuous coverage and automatic alerts for the prevention of damage to underground utility infrastructure.



The company implemented RodRadar’s LDR Excavate in multiple projects across Aspen, resulting in annual savings in the order of $100,000 while increasing safety for their employees. The technology assisted the excavator operator on-site, and time after time detected unmapped utilities during excavation, such as communication and electricity lines, while also preventing accidental strikes on utilities whose depths were previously unknown, despite being marked.

Additionally, after seeing the LDR Excavate in action, the Municipality of Aspen has added to its future construction bids a requirement to deploy advanced utility locating techniques during excavation.


Award Winner

Shay Stutsman was named Contractor of the Year in 2023 by Equipment World for utilizing cutting-edge earthmoving technologies.

Stutsman & Gerbaz were the first in the U.S. to utilize RodRadar’s bucket.

"RodRadar’s Live Dig Radar changes excavation! It has been incredibly accurate and easy to use and it clearly gives us a tremendous advantage. Nobody could see into the ground – until now. With the LDR, we can finally see what’s hidden from view while digging and avoid hitting underground utilities. It increases the operator’s confidence and enables faster and more efficient work. Managers at the Aspen municipality just couldn’t believe it. In fact, one of their project managers said: 'The future is NOW - and it is here.'"

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