Are You Digging in Your Yard this Spring?: The Top 5 Reasons to Make Sure You Call 811 Before You Dig When Working in Your Yard
This article about how you should call 811 before you dig is sponsored by Blue Stakes of Utah 811.
Did you know that every time you decide to dig, you could be putting yourself and the people around you at risk? Even at home, you could end up with serious injuries just because you didn’t call Blue Stakes of Utah 811. There are millions of miles of buried utilities just under the ground surface that are vital to everyday living. If you decide to dig without mapping out the utilities on your property you could cut utility lines like water, electricity, and natural gas. The utilities you could damage could also be your responsibility. So why not call 811? Especially when calling Blue Stakes of Utah 811 is free to you!
Call 811 Before Digging
Do you really need to call 811? YES! You can easily avoid injury, expense, and embarrassment that you could experience when everyday services like electricity, water, internet are cut. When you call 811, specify where you are planning on doing the digging project. If you want a specific area to be located, you can use white spray paint or white flags on the ground to show the utility companies where you will be digging. They will only locate within the area you have specified.
Remember, it’s the law to notify Blue Stakes of Utah 811 2 business days prior to digging!
Give Utility Companies Time to Find and Mark Facilities
Wait for the utility companies to respond to your request. After you dial 811, these companies will get in touch with you directly. You’ll want to expect notifications from all the companies listed in your request.
Confirm that All Utility Companies Have Responded to Your Request
You’ll want to make sure that all of the utility companies are confirmed and have located their facilities. You can do this by comparing the marks to the list of utilities that Blue Stakes of Utah 811 has notified. You can only start digging once all of the companies have visited the property.
Respect and Protect the Markings During the Project
The markings that are left by the utility companies are your guide to digging properly. If you are unable to maintain the marks during your project, or if the project will continue past your request’s expiration date you’ll want to make sure to call 811 to ask for an update.
When you start digging, you’ll want to dig with hand tools within two feet of the markings. This is known as the safety zone. This is to protect the lines as you proceed to dig. Make sure you are paying close attention to the lines that are in the area you plan to dig in. This also may mean you have to readjust where you dig to make sure that the utility lines are carefully preserved and not damaged.
Call 811 Before You Dig
It doesn’t matter if you are planting a garden, a mailbox, or something much larger, you still need to contact Blue Stakes of Utah 811 before you dig. If you’ve hired a contractor they will need to contact Blue Stakes of Utah 811 on your behalf. It’s the law.
Blue Stakes of Utah 811 will send your request to the utility companies who will send out a locator to identify all your underground utilities so that you won’t hit any gas lines, water lines, communication lines, or any other utilities under the soil so you can safely find the best spot to dig. It’s up to you to make your digging project as safe as possible.