Aug. 11 serves as convenient reminder to call 811 before digging

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 6, 2022

Aug. 11 is almost here, and Louisiana 811 hopes that the 8/11 date on the calendar will serve as a natural reminder for residents to contact 811 prior to any digging project to have underground utility lines marked. Every few minutes an underground utility line is damaged because someone decided to dig without first contacting 811.

When calling 811, homeowners and contractors are connected to Louisiana 811, the local 811 center, which notifies the appropriate utility companies of their intent to dig. Requests can also be made online at www.louisiana811.com.  Professional locators then arrive at the digging site to mark the approximate locations of underground lines with flags, spray paint or both.

Striking a single line can cause injury, repair costs, inconvenient outages and fines. Every digging project, no matter how large or small, warrants contacting 811 by phone or online. Installing a mailbox, building a deck, planting a tree and laying a patio are just some examples of digging projects that require a free 811 request at least a few days before breaking ground.

“On Aug. 11 and throughout the year, we remind homeowners and professional contractors alike to use the free 811 service before digging to reduce the risk of striking an underground utility line,” said Brent Saltzman, executive director for Louisiana 811. “Calling 811 or visiting www.louisiana811.com is really the only way to know which utilities are buried in your area so that you can dig safely.”

The depth of utility lines can vary for a number of 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 digging in a location that’s previously been marked, the risk of striking an underground utility line still exists.

 

Visit www.louisiana811.com for more information about 811 and safe digging practices.