We stopped using a spiking tool over 15 years ago. We spiked a cable once then cut out a portion to take back to the lab for analysis of the fault. The spike hole happened to be in the piece cutoff. In the lab we could see where the spike went right past the conductor and never touched it. This was 220 mil TR-XLP over 1/0 solid aluminum. The spike actually missed to the side of the conductor.
Since then we use a grounded hot cutter. The cutter head is eight feet away from your hands and there is a 2/0 copper ground to the jaws. With this set-up I KNOW the cable is dead when I cut it.