Thinking about getting started on a new outdoor project? Whether it is something as small as planting a tree or as big as a home improvement project, it is important to know that utility lines may be in the ground below before you start digging. Remember to call Dig Tess (1-800-DIG-TESS/1-800-344-8377 or dial 811) at least two business days before you dig or drill on your property to get publicly owned underground utility lines marked for free!
When you call, be prepared to give the Dig Tess operator the following information about your project: *Street Address; *City and County; *Type of work and extent of work; *Date and time excavation is scheduled to begin; *Your name as well as the contractor’s (if using one) or contact person’s name, address, and callback phone number.
Dig Tess will alert the affected utility companies, who then dispatch a professional to mark the underground lines. Multiple line locators may come to the digging site, depending on the utilities located there. Just because you have seen one mark on the ground doesn’t necessarily mean that all utilities have been located. If you are unsure if all utility locators have been to the site, call Dig Tess at 811.
Remember, having the lines located BEFORE you dig or drill is the law and will help protect you from potential injury, fines, and repair costs. Every 60 seconds, an underground utility is hit in the United States, and in 37% of all digging incidents reported in 2008, no notification was made to Dig Tess or another appropriate call center.
Damages can vary widely, depending on the size and type of utility cable that is damaged. One common construction job, installing a fence, requires digging multiple holes in areas likely to contain underground utilities, such as property lines or near sidewalks and curbs. Digging a fence post in your yard and hitting a telecommunications line could disrupt services to your neighborhood. Imagine digging a fence post in your field and severing a large fiber cable! It could result in widespread outages as well as losses to E911 and other vital services we depend on every day. In 2008, a cut fiber cable limited internet access in three states! Protect yourself from these liabilities by calling Dig Tess at 811 BEFORE you dig or drill…and remember, it’s FREE!