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Why Call 811 Before You Dig?

By Justin Felles

Buried utility lines can be located just about anywhere on your property. If you’re planning to start any digging project – big or small – you are required by California law to call 811 first. When you call 811 at least two days before digging, a professional will mark your underground utility lines – including water, electric and gas – with color coded markings (see graphic below) to help keep you safe. The service is free of charge and is available for homeowners and construction contractors.

According to the Common Ground Alliance, having lines marked was a step that was overlooked by 48 percent of homeowners in 2013 — with an underground utility line damaged every six minutes because someone decided to dig without calling.

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