Always Contact 811 Before Beginning Digging Projects
YARMOUTH, Maine (August 10, 2022) – At Summit Natural Gas of Maine (SNGME), the safety of our customers and the communities we serve is our number one priority. In observance of 811 Day, celebrated on August 11 each year, SNGME is reminding community members and professional contractors to avoid accidents and utility interruptions by following the law and always calling 811 to have underground utility lines marked before beginning any outdoor projects.
“This is a fun time of year when people enjoy tackling those outdoor DIY projects,” said Darrin Chism, Senior Director of Operations at SNGME. “Because Summit is committed to never compromising the safety of our customers, we’re reminding residents that they must call 811 before they dig. This free and simple precaution will help homeowners prevent service disruptions, serious injuries, and expensive repairs.”
The Common Ground Alliance, a national nonprofit organization working to protect underground utility lines, says damage to underground utilities happens once every few minutes due to failure to call 811. While large excavation projects often cause these mistakes, a homeowner’s simple mailbox installation or even a modest gardening project can lead to striking infrastructure that is right underground.
As part of National 811 Safe Digging Day, and every day, SNGME encourages everyone to take the following steps when planning any digging project:
In the event a gas line is struck or ruptured outside of a home or business: Step 1: Leave immediately on foot! Do not use electric switches, telephones (including cell phones), start or drive a car or anything that could cause a spark. Move in an upwind direction away from the leak or vapor cloud where you can no longer smell gas and maintain a safe distance. Step 2: Go directly to a safe location and call both 1-800-909-7642 and 911. Step 3: Warn others to stay away from the leak. Abandon any equipment being used in or near the area.
Summit Natural Gas of Maine provides natural gas service to many Maine communities in and around Kennebec Valley, Cumberland, Falmouth, and Yarmouth. It serves more than 4,500 customers and is committed to providing a reliable, modern, and safe natural gas system to its customers. Summit Natural Gas of Maine operates approximately 300 miles of transmission and distribution piping, all of which are odorized. We take pride in being your local natural gas provider and look forward to continuing to serve families and businesses throughout Maine for decades to come.