Is it safe to dig?

Asked by: Aryanna Durgan
Score: 4.2/5 (14 votes)

Hitting a buried line while digging can disrupt utility service, cost money to repair, or cause serious injury or death. Always contact your 811 center, wait the required time for utilities to respond to your request, and ensure that all utilities have responded to your request before putting a shovel in the ground.

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Secondly, How does Dig Safe get paid?

Dig Safe® is a not-for-profit clearinghouse that notifies participating utility companies of your plans to dig. In turn, these utilities (or their contract locating companies) respond to mark out the location of their underground facilities. Dig Safe is a free service, funded entirely by its member utility companies.

Similarly one may ask, How far down is safe to dig?. OSHA and CGA provide health and safety guidelines for digging trenches, holes and excavations. State building codes recommend digging 18 to 24 inches (457mm to 610mm) from the utility and its marking to avoid damage to the utility line.

Herein, When should you call Dig Safe?

After notifying Dig Safe, you must wait 48 hours in Vermont, or 72 hours in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. (Excluding weekends and legal holidays.) During this time, utility representatives respond to mark their lines within your pre-marked area.

WHO calls Dig Safe?

Safe Digging Guidelines

Contact DigAlert: You must contact DigAlert prior to starting your excavation. You can initiate a ticket by either utilizing DigAlert Direct or by calling 811 or 800-422-4133 to start a DigAlert® Ticket.

40 related questions found

How far down are cable lines buried?

The minimum depth requirement of a direct burial cable is 24 inches, except when installed under a concrete slab with a minimum thickness of 2 inches. In this case, the cable can be installed at only 18 inches deep.

What happens when you call Dig Safe?

811 is a free service managed by Underground Service Alert and available to everyone. After you call, Underground Service Alert will contact PG&E and other companies that have underground lines in your area. Representatives will then mark the location of their underground lines so you can avoid them and dig safely.

What does Dig Safe look for?

Utility companies (NOT Dig Safe) mark their own lines. Dig Safe is the communication network that notifies these companies to respond for a mark-out. Some utility members use contract locating companies to mark their lines. Member companies are not responsible to mark privately owned facilities.

Does Dig Safe mark private property?

Dig Safe does not mark underground facilities. You must contact a member utility via Dig Safe, or a private locating service directly, to request that underground lines be identified.

Is it illegal to remove utility flags?

Generally, flags should not be taken off. Doing so is illegal and you could pay a fine. In cases where you accidentally removed it, it's best to call 811 for help.

How do I check my pipes before digging?

811 is the national call-before-you-dig phone number. Anyone who plans to dig should call 811 or go to their state 811 center's website before digging to request that the approximate location of buried utilities be marked with paint or flags so that you don't unintentionally dig into an underground utility line.

Can I dig in my yard?

Technically there is no limit to how far you can dig; especially if the digging process is not likely to disrupt any neighbors. However, the reality is that you'll need specialist equipment to complete a dig like this; which means you'll need a professional firm and permission to dig!

How much is Miss Dig?

There is no cost to you — even the call is free — so Call 811 Before You Dig. Follow this link for more information on 811. If you can't connect to the one-call center by dialing 811, dial 1-888-258-0808 to get a toll-free direct-dial number for the one-call center in your area.

What is a dig ticket?

What is a dig ticket? During your call, the UPC of Georgia will give you a ticket number. This ticket is the official notification of you request and is called the “dig ticket” or “locate request”. The “dig ticket” is immediately sent to all utility owners in your area.

How do you read Dig Safe markings?

Proposed excavation areas should be identified with white marks, with the excavator's company name or logo within the premarked areas. Premark the exact area of excavation using solid lines, dashes or dots. Failure to premark when practical may jeopardize your Dig Safe permit and/or result in a civil penalty.

Does DigAlert cost money?

Answer: It's free for anyone that is digging to get a DigAlert ticket. Our services are paid for by the owners of underground facilities.

How long does Dig Alert take?

California law requires that you call two (2) working days, not including the date of notification, before your planned excavation. However, if you are digging because of an EMERGENCY, you are not required by law to call.

How do you call Dig Safe?

The Dig Safe Call Center processes excavation notices Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., not including legal holidays. Off hour coverage is provided for emergency work only. The toll free number for excavators in Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont is 888-DIG-SAFE (888-344-7233).

How deep are high voltage lines buried?

Underground power lines of any type have very thick insulation. In addition, National Codes dictate the depth, below ground, these lines must be buried. Some low voltage underground circuits could be as shallow as 18 inches, while most higher voltage circuits will be deeper than 24 inches.

How close can water lines be to electrical lines?

24 inches between gas and electric lines. 12 inches between water and electric lines.

Where are cable lines buried?

1 foot or less – cable or telephone lines in conduit. 2 feet – electricity, sewage, telephone lines not in conduit. 3 feet – more electrical lines, water pipes, sewage lines.

Who pays Miss Dig?

Members of MISS DIG 811 receive locate requests when contractors and homeowners are doing excavation work near their underground infrastructure. Once a request is received, the member marks the location of their underground facilities. All members pay an annual invoice for participation on the system.

What do red flags in the ground mean?

Red flags – Red is the most common flag. It signifies electric utilities, such as cables and power lines. These mark the power lines that connect to a neighbor's power grid. Marking these junctions helps avoid a neighborhood-wide power outage.

How deep can you dig before calling Miss Dig?

There is no allotted depth before a person needs to call 811. Whether you are just planting small shrubs or installing fences, CGA says any time you are putting a shovel in the ground you need to call due to the fact that many utilities are buried just a few inches below the surface.

How do I dig a hole in my backyard?

How to Dig a Hole: Pro Tips
  1. Step 1: String your line and pound the stakes. ...
  2. Step 2: Carve out a soil divot with a spade. ...
  3. Step 3: Loosen earth with a tile shovel. ...
  4. Step 4: Use your clamshell digger. ...
  5. Step 5: Use a reciprocating saw on large roots. ...
  6. Step 6: Dislodge rocks with a digging bar. ...
  7. Step 7: Tamp the soil with the other end.