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Thread: Safe Digging

  1. #1

    Default Safe Digging

    Just a helpful tip: before you start any digging project, like digging a pond, installing a deck or even a playground, call 811. It will make sure you won’t accidentally hit an underground utility line - which could hurt you and take out service to your entire neighborhood. So for your and your neighbors’ sake, check out our site for some info: http://www.call811.com/

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Safe Digging

    When we had some major landscaping done recently, the contractor had a locator company come out (required by state law, apparently) and locate ALL the utility lines, not just in the front, where the work was done. The locator marked and flagged all the lines, front and back--it was very colorful that day!--and I then used a CAD program to plot my lot and all the lines he'd marked. I'll save the utility plot and print it for the next owner of the property when we eventully sell. I'll remember where the lines are, but a new owner might need that info some day.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Safe Digging

    Quote Originally Posted by hamwhatam View Post
    I then used a CAD program to plot my lot and all the lines he'd marked. I'll save the utility plot and print it for the next owner of the property when we eventully sell. I'll remember where the lines are, but a new owner might need that info some day.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!! Most homeowners don't know where their services are, nor keep track of anything they've added, much less pass info onto the next owner. I've not met many contractors that do it either. As part of all of my work I provide a plot plan of my work so that the owner and subsequent future owners will know where and why things were done. I do the same thing on my own properties as well. Sure makes repairs and future projects easier.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    The Great White North
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    4,045

    Default Re: Safe Digging

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!! Most homeowners don't know where their services are, nor keep track of anything they've added, much less pass info onto the next owner
    hamwhatam .... Ditto Spruce's sentiments ... you deserve a prize ... good stuff.
    "" an ounce of perception -- a pound of obscure "
    - Rush

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Holliston, MA
    Posts
    19

    Default Re: Safe Digging

    Something to consider, prior to 811 it was Dig Safe. When the program was run under Dig Safe, I ran into two rather interesting issues. The Dig Safe program would not map out the water main into the house. They said I had to go through the town for that. The other was the gas main/feed to the house. Dig Safe would only map out "where" the gas feed was detected. It would not tell me how deep. They recommended that I call the gas company. I called the gas company they said they could not give that information out in the post 9/11 era/control procedures. Their comeback was "they own the line into the house and I didn't need to know the depth." Shall we say, I know I won't hit by jumping on my shovel to till soil, but it would be nice to know given it is my property.

    So 811 may not map out all lines and you may have to call other agencies.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    6,480

    Default Re: Safe Digging

    Quote Originally Posted by bean_counter67 View Post
    Something to consider, prior to 811 it was Dig Safe.
    I've always know them as USA-1. The local municipal building permit authority will know who to contact, as will any contractor who is licensed for operating digging equipment.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    1,157

    Default Re: Safe Digging

    I get the impression the gas company won't tell you how deep the line is because they don't want you to dig over it, period. A liability thing if they are wrong or if you misunderstand or just go too far. They can just say we never give that information out, which appears to be true.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Safe Digging

    The natural gas line serving my cul-de-sac is barely 4-6 inches under the surface; I've seen it when another utility worked here. Neither Underground Property Protection nor the gas utility seemed at all interested when I tried to advise them.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Safe Digging

    Hamwhatam again--The company that did the marking here is SM&P, and I see their trucks around here a lot. They marked EVERY utility line on my lot--water, gas (both municipal), phone, electric, cable--with flags, and I left them in place until I could do the computer plot. There were some surprises, too, like a "stray" electric line to a neighbor's.

    You don't have to use a computer; just a sketch map, as accurate as you can make it, would be a big help.

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