Calling 811 before any digging projects is crucial to protect yourself and your community
Yarmouth, Maine (August 10, 2023) – Summit Natural Gas of Maine (Summit) reminds customers that August 11th is a great time to remember the critical importance of calling 811 before any digging project. Calling 811 three working days before a digging project allows local utilities to mark underground utility lines. An underground utility line is damaged every few minutes because someone decided to dig without first contacting 811.
“Every digging project, no matter how large or small, requires contacting 811 to ensure underground utilities have been marked appropriately before digging,” said Nathan Knell, Vice President of Operations Support. “At Summit, safety is our top priority, and simply calling 811 three working days before a yard project can ensure the safety of you, your family, and your neighborhood.”
When you contact 811, your local utility companies will mark the approximate location of any buried lines in your yard so that you don’t risk injuring yourself or disrupting utility service to the neighborhood. If you plan to dig near a marked utility line, you must hand dig and not use mechanized equipment near a marked line to prevent damaging an underground utility line. Striking a single line can cause repair costs, inconvenient outages and fines, severe injuries, and even death. Every digging project warrants contacting 811 by phone or online. For example, things like installing a mailbox, building a deck, planting a tree, and laying a patio are some examples of digging projects requiring a free 811 request at least a few days before breaking ground.
The depth of utility lines can vary for several reasons, such as erosion, previous digging projects, and uneven surfaces. Utility lines need to be properly marked because even when digging only a few inches or in a location marked previously, the risk of striking an underground utility line still exists.