April marks the start of spring digging season, so Common Ground Iowa and Iowa One Call are encouraging Iowa residents to call 811 before digging to prevent injuries, property damage and inconvenient outages.
This month is dedicated to increasing awareness of safe digging practices across Iowa and reminding homeowners to call 811 before starting any outdoor digging projects. One underground utility line, electric, gas, communications, water or sewer, is damaged by digging every six minutes nationwide because someone did not call 811, according to the Common Ground Alliance.
On April 18, 2016, many people will be planting trees for Earth Day and Arbor Day projects, so it is important to remind your customers to call 811 to have underground utility lines marked before digging begins.
Call Iowa One Call at 811 at least 48 hours prior to a scheduled project to allow a professional locator to visit the property and mark the approximate location of the underground utility lines. Remember to dig around the marks, not on them, and also remember that time, erosion or root structure growth can shift the locations of utility lines.
Striking a utility line while digging can lead to injury, penalties, repair costs, and inconvenient outages, so consider this is a friendly reminder to call 811 before you dig in April and every other month of the year.