The Importance of Calling 811 Before You Dig
This free service helps you mark underground utility lines before you excavate, protecting your family and finances
Summertime means home improvement and yard projects galore. Oftentimes, these projects require digging or excavation, but do you know what’s below the surface of your property? No matter how deep you’re digging, it is essential to call 811 before you start. Notifying 811 of your plans is not only a good idea, but it’s also the law.
Why You Need to Call 811 Before You Dig
Luminate Broadband’s fiber cables run approximately 6-12 inches below the ground, and so do many other utility lines, such as gas and electrical lines, and water pipes. Digging into these lines can be extremely dangerous for you and your family; it could also disrupt service to your whole neighborhood and strain the resources of your local utility companies.
Keep in mind that property owners are financially responsible for any damage done to utility lines on their property while digging.
What is 811
811 is a free service for both residential and commercial users. When you call 811, they notify local utility companies who will send a technician to locate any lines that run through your property. These lines are marked with colorful flags so that they are easily identified, and you can avoid digging into anything hazardous.
In Colorado, this service is free, and it is incredibly simple to submit a request.
Submitting an Online 811 Request
Calling 811 is really easy, but if you prefer, Colorado also allows you to submit online requests through colorado811.org/idig811/. Once you submit your request, You will receive a confirmation ticket so you know that the process has started. Colorado 811 will contact the utility companies with lines in your neighborhood. These companies will then send out technicians to mark the lines on your property.
Once all of your utilities have been marked, you will be cleared to start your excavation project.
What’s Not Covered by 811
Some excavation hazards do not fall under the service. For instance, sprinkler and irrigation systems, propane tanks, and power lines into a separate garage are considered private utilities, and property owners are responsible for ensuring that these are properly marked. Once you submit an 811 request, it is also possible that a utility company would get back to you regarding other private utilities on your property. There are private companies that will mark these private utility exceptions for a fee. While hiring someone may not seem ideal, the cost of properly marking utility lines on your property is much lower than damaging the lines or, in the worst case, experiencing injury or death.
Calling 811 or visiting colorado811.org/idig811 is a simple and free process that will help you identify underground utility lines before you start digging. Utilizing this resource not only enables you to protect your family from injury but also helps ensure continuous utility service for your whole community. Call 811 to know what’s below today.