In honor of National Safe Digging Day tomorrow, Aug. 11, Dominion Energy Ohio today announced a reminder that Ohio law requires property owners and contractors to call 8-1-1 — to have underground utility lines marked — at least two business days, but no more than 10 business days, prior to any digging project.
Making the call to 8-1-1 connects the general public and contractors to the Ohio Utilities Protection Service (OUPS), the local one-call center, which notifies the appropriate utility companies of their intent to dig. This service is free of charge. Professional locators are then sent to the requested digging site to mark the approximate locations of underground lines and facilities with flags, spray paint or both.
“Dominion Energy Ohio takes the safety of our customers and the communities we serve very seriously,” said Jeff Murphy, Vice President and General Manager, Ohio & West Virginia Distribution. “Calling before digging helps ensure safety and prevents accidental dig-ins and potential injuries, property damage and utility service disruptions.”
Third-party disruption is the leading cause of damage to underground utility lines. Promoting the Call 8-1-1 and other pipeline safety messages has helped Dominion Energy Ohio reduce third-party dig-ins by 50 percent over the past decade, company officials say.
State law mandates a call to 8-1-1 for every digging project, no matter how big or small. Installing a mailbox, putting in a fence, building a deck, or planting a tree, are all examples of digging projects that require a call to 8-1-1 before starting.